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Can Your Alarm Clock Give You Dementia?

Can Your Alarm Clock Give You Dementia?
It can. For two reasons. First, the alarm clock can interrupt the sleep cycle, often right in the middle.

Sleep cycles are typically about ninety minutes long.
They start with some light sleep and then cycle into a deep rapid eye movement cycle before slowly rising to a light sleep cycle.
Being consistently awakened in the middle of a rapid eye movement sleep cycle is a problem because rapid eye movement sleep is so important to cognitive and mental well-being. It might be compared to interrupting someone while they are playing a complicated piece of music. To interrupt would make it nearly impossible for the person to complete the music piece in its entirety. Often, they would need to start all over from the beginning.
Once a person is jolted out of rapid eye movement sleep by an alarm or any other disturbance, it will take a significant amount of time to get back to that deep sleep stage. This can take anywhere from thirty minutes to an hour.
Furthermore, it’s critical to mental well-being that we slowly cycle out of rapid eye movement sleep. This means we emerge naturally and gradually to light sleep, from which we can then be awakened.
Another problem with today’s modern alarm clocks is they are often digital and put out a significant amount of light. This light can help prevent us from falling into a deep sleep in the first place because the light will stimulate cortisol levels and depress melatonin levels. Lower cortisol and higher melatonin levels are conducive to the deeper rapid eye movement stage sleeping.
The best solution concerning the light on the alarm clock is to use one that doesn’t have a light. Alternatively , eye covers can be worn: a good idea if there are other forms of light coming into the room at night.
As for awakening to the alarm, a good way of approaching this — to avoid awakening late — is to first make sure the alarm is set at least six if not seven hours from the time you go to bed. That will allow four sleep cycles to complete.
Before sleep, you should mentally instruct yourself to awaken before the alarm sounds — at whatever time is five to ten minutes before the alarm is set to go off.
This self-instruction will subconsciously direct the mind to awaken before the alarm goes off.
And the brain will also subtly rearrange our sleep cycles to accommodate that time so that it completes its last rapid eye movement sleep cycle before you awaken.

An even better way to awaken would be to sleep near a window that allows you to awaken with the morning sun rising as it shines through the window. This, together with hearing the sounds of chirping birds and your predetermination to awaken at a certain time is the best alarm clock.
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