Popular Sleep Aids Increase Dementia Risk, 4018

Bill Still

Stillreport: A new study says that the use of popular sleep aids, such as Ambien, may be linked to an increased risk of developing dementia. The study followed approximately 3,000 older white and black adults without dementia for an average of nine years to understand the potential relationship between sleep aids and dementia risk. The study found that white participants in the study were at a 79% increased risk of developing dementia compared to those who rarely used these popular sleep drugs. During the study, 20% of participants developed dementia, and researchers discovered that whites were three times as likely as blacks to take sleep medications often. Whites were also more likely to use sleep aids like benzodiazepines, trazodone, and “Z-drugs,” which include zopiclone, eszopiclone, zaleplon, and zolpidem (Ambien). Previous research suggested a potential link between sleep aids and an increased risk of dementia, particularly with benzodiazepines. These medications are commonly used to treat sleep problems, anxiety, and other conditions. However, the exact nature of the relationship between sleep aids and dementia is not yet fully understood. The study has several limitations, including the fact that it only included older adults and did not account for other factors that could contribute to an increased risk of dementia, such as family history or lifestyle factors. Nevertheless, the findings highlight the importance of further research into the potential risks associated with the long-term use of sleep aids.

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