Snoring ‘may cause brain damage’
A warning has been issued to snorers that it could harm their brains.
This is according to research carried out by a team in Australia, which found that those who make nighttime noise have damaged arteries and reduced grey matter.
Carried out by Melbourne’s Austin Health, the study into the common condition sleep apnoea, which causes disrupted sleep by interrupting breathing during rest, suggests it could reduce brain power.
The researchers examined brain scans of 60 individuals in their mid-40s diagnosed with the disorder and found that compared with healthy subjects, their levels of grey matter were lower, AAP reports.
“What specific part of sleep apnoea might cause these changes we can’t say, but we can see the changes that have occurred,” sleep physician Dr Fergal O’Donoghue of the facility’s Institute for Breathing and Sleep told the news agency.
He suggested that as many as 90 per cent of cases of sleep apnoea are currently undiagnosed in Australia.
In the UK, obstructive sleep apnoea is thought to affect around four per cent of middle-aged men and two per cent of middle-aged women.