Why we sleep less as we age

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It’s a known fact that as we age, we sleep less. But the reasoning behind this phenomenon is poorly understood. Do older adults sleep less because they need less sleep, or because they simply can’t get the sleep they need?

In a review out [Arpil 5] in the journal Neuron, a group of researchers from the University of California, Berkeley argue the latter—that because of certain brain mechanisms that change as we age, we are unable to get a necessary amount of sleep. Researchers say this knowledge not only gives them a platform to develop medication to target this problem, but also a means to implement therapies already available that can treat these issues.

Researchers have learned that as we age, our ability to gain a restful sleep declines.

[Matthew Walker, head of the sleep and neuroimaging laboratory at Berkeley] and his colleagues argue that that’s the result of a loss of neuronal connections in the brain that pick up on sleepiness cues.

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The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Read full, original post: We sleep less as we age because our brains don’t think we’re tired

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