2015 Alzheimer’s Statistics

EDITOR: These stats are from Alzheimers.net, an online community dedicated to education, advocacy and supporting those whose lives have been impacted by Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Alzheimers.net was created by people touched by Alzheimer’s to give caregivers, those with Alzheimer’s a place to share our passion for change and a cure for the disease. I added a short section on the impact of sleep duration & quality and a related infographic.

Alzheimer’s Statistics Worldwide

2015 Alzheimer's Statistics

  • Worldwide, nearly 44 million people have Alzheimer’s or a related dementia. (Alzheimer’s Disease International)
  • Only 1-in-4 people with Alzheimer’s disease have been diagnosed. (Alzheimer’s Disease International)
  • Alzheimer’s and dementia is most common in Western Europe (North America is close behind)
  • Alzheimer’s is least prevalent in Sub-Saharan Africa. (Alzheimer’s Disease International)
  • Alzheimer’s and other dementias are the top cause for disabilities in later life. (Alzheimer’s Disease International)

Read More …

Mysterious World of Sleep

 

Woman sleeping in bed (Getty Images/Tetra Images RF)

Woman sleeping in bed (Getty Images/Tetra Images RF)

The Mysterious World of Sleep

Byline article by Tom Allon (original in Huffington Post)

I’ve been thinking a lot about sleep lately. It’s a topic many complain about and discuss occasionally with friends and family, but it still remains a very mysterious topic to most people around the world.

After air, water and food, it’s probably the most essential thing in our lives to ensure our health and daily functioning. And although it’s self evident, it bears repeating that almost all humans spend one third of their lives (25-30 years) sleeping. Read More …

Why Color and Light Matter

Secrets for Improving your Sleep, Health & Productivity:
Why Color and Light Matter

by Leanne Venier, BSME, CP AOBTA

(From her LinkedIn article. Also Published under “Research” in Texas MD Magazine, April/May 2015 (sold throughout Texas) & in TexasMDMonthly.com)

Leanne Venier - Luminous Tranquility

Pictured Above: “Luminous Tranquility” by Leanne Venier- LeanneVenier.com

It’s 7 am. The alarm clock starts blaring and you groggily reach over to swat it into snooze-ville, wishing for nothing more than an extra hour of sleep. Lately, you just never feel rested in the morning although you go to bed plenty early every night. Read More …

Sleep Statistics from Sleepless in America

By Wayne Caswell, Intelligent Sleep and founder of Modern Health Talk

This last Sunday, I watched “Sleepless in America,” a 2-hour documentary on the National Geographic channel, and I captured some of its powerful statistics and blended them with my own, forming the basis of today’s article. But first, here’s the 3-min trailer. Additional short video segments are included below, along with a related infographic, and if the full length video gets posted, I’ll include it too.

Sleep Statistics

How much sleep do we Need?

Read More …

Amyloid Plaques and Alzheimer’s Disease

Neurons

Alzheimer’s Disease affects millions of Americans, but right now, there isn’t a known cure. Researchers in Connecticut, however, suggest that the solution might lie in understanding the gooey protein that builds up in brains of Alzheimer’s patients.

That’s how WNPR introduced an article on Alzheimer’s Prevention: Understanding Malicious Brain Proteins.

Modern Health Talk has spent a lot of time covering sleep issues because of the direct relationship between good sleep and health, safety and performance. That includes its relationship with Alzheimer’s, so I added the following comment and include it in today’s post, along with an introductory video by the National Institutes of Health. Read More …

Sleep Deficiency – a Public Health Epidemic

By Wayne Caswell, founder of Modern Health Talk and cofounder of Intelligent Sleep

Honor Thy Sleep

Image source: from the 3:10 min video below.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over 70 million American workers suffer from chronic sleep problems, and researchers have associated their insufficient sleep with increased risks of inflammation, obesity, diabetes, depression, cardiovascular disease, breast cancer, Alzheimer’s, and early death. That’s why the CDC has labeled sleep deficiency “a public health epidemic.”

Just as important are the positive benefits that getting good sleep provides. It helps improve alertness, attention, concentration, creativity, decision-making, driver safety, energy, focus, judgment, mood, reaction & recovery times, stamina, and working memory. These are all attributes of good performance at school, work and in sports, and who doesn’t want to make better grades, advance their career, or excel in athletics? Read More …

Take Care of Your Heart This Valentine’s Day

Valentine AppleYou can always tell when it’s a month from Valentine’s Day; stores are screaming love and have filled entire aisles with merchandise from red decorations and heart-shaped boxes of delicious chocolates to mushy cards filled with sentimental poems…and hearts…hearts everywhere. All the red heart-shapes make it difficult not to think of your own heart and its impressive job of steadily keeping blood and oxygen pumping throughout your body.

This Valentine’s Day, why not take care of your heart? After all, statistics underscore the need for seniors to cut their risk of heart disease. An American Heart Association fact sheet for 2013 reported that more than 42 million Americans over the age of 60 have cardiovascular disease, and for those between the ages of 60 and 79, just over 70 percent have heart disease. But while these numbers are concerning, the problem is avoidable. With proper care and a focus on prevention, it is very possible to reduce your risk of heart disease.

Not smoking, regular exercise, a healthy diet, moderate alcohol consumption, and adequate sleep can significantly lower your risk by 65% and cut the risk of fatal events as much as 83%. That’s according to this article referring to a large study published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. Read More …

How to Make a Smart Bed for your Smart Bedroom

Luna

Here’s you can make a smart bed for your smart bedroom.

Because good sleep so closely tied to good health, I’ve posted dozens of articles about sleep, including many about technology and how artificial lights interfere with our biological clocks and sleep-wake cycle. I’ve also been working with Dr. Bruce Meleski to open Intelligent Sleep, a new sleep wellness and brain health center here in Austin. We’re doing some pretty cool stuff with metabolic, neurosensory, and behavioral therapies, and we’re promoting a vision of the Smart Bedroom. So today’s post is about a new product we hope to carry and that I think you’ll like. (video below) Read More …

Snooze or Lose – TODAY Show series summary

Snooze or LoseOn November 9th, TODAY launches a weeklong “Snooze or Lose” series with a commissioned survey exploring why Americans can’t sleep. Highlights with the best statistics and videos are shown below, but more can be found at the link to today.com.

Sleep Statistics

Americans feel so sleep deprived that almost half of adults — 65% of women — prefer a good night’s sleep over sex.

  • 72% of adults see sleep as one of the great pleasures of life, but 46% say they don’t get enough. It’s even worse for women; 58% fall short of their ideal goal of just over eight hours a night.
  • 33% of young adults 18-34 believe to get ahead in their careers, they must survive on less sleep; while 19% of 35-54 year-olds and just 6% for seniors  think this.
  • 40% of young adults, 33% of older adults, and over 11% of seniors believe they must sacrifice sleep to care for their families.
  • 64% of young adults, 49% of older adults, and 35% of seniors agree that being able to survive on less sleep would be an advantage.
  • 32% of young adults say work makes them fret throughout the night.
  • 31% say their children cause sleepless nights.
  • When it comes to children, interrupted sleep seems unavoidable and 42% of people with a child under 18 report inadequate sleep.

Read More …

Parafacial Zone as On-Off Switch for Deep Sleep

Scientists discover new “sleep node” in the brain

Findings may lead to new therapies for sleep disorders, including insomnia

Parafacial zone in brain stem

Using designer genes, researchers at UB and Harvard were able to ‘turn on’ specific neurons in the brainstem that result in on-off switch for deep sleep.

BUFFALO, N.Y. (9/16/2014) – A sleep-promoting circuit located deep in the primitive brainstem has revealed how we fall into deep sleep. Discovered by researchers at Harvard School of Medicine and the University at Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, this is only the second “sleep node” identified in the mammalian brain whose activity appears to be both necessary and sufficient to produce deep sleep.

Published online in August in Nature Neuroscience, the study demonstrates that fully half of all of the brain’s sleeppromoting activity originates from the parafacial zone (PZ) in the brainstem. Read More …

Stress Management Tips

Everyone occasionally has to deal with stress, especially when starting up a business like Dr. Bruce Meleski and I are doing with Intelligent Sleep. So this week, with his permission, I’m sharing this great story from Jeffrey Fry and his 15 Stress Management Tips.glass-of-water

When explaining stress management to an audience, a lecturer raised a glass of water and asked, “How heavy is this glass of water?”

Answers called out ranged from 6 ounces to 24 ounces, but the lecturer replied that, “The absolute weight doesn’t matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it…

  • If I hold it for a minute, it’s not a problem.
  • If I hold it for an hour, I’ll have an ache in my right arm.
  • If I hold it for a day, you’ll have to call an ambulance.
  • In each case, it’s the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.”

She continued, “And that’s the way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, the burden will become increasingly heavy … and we won’t be able to carry on.

Read More …

70 tips to Improve Sleep

70 Tips to Fall Asleep Faster & Stay Asleep Longer

Byline article by Michael Lamb (original at SweatShorts.co)

We all sleep and we all dream. Some nights it is easier to fall asleep. Other nights it’s a battle.

After having some trouble with sleeping these past couple of weeks. I decided to do some research. Since a lot of people wear sweat shorts to bed I thought, why not share this information with you? Hoping that you will find it as useful as I have. After doing all of my research I came up with 70 tips to improve sleep, help you fall asleep quicker, and stay asleep longer. Hopefully this info will have you sleeping like a champ.

If you don’t have any trouble sleeping, then by all means don’t change a thing. Just share these sleep improvement tips with others. Read More …

Sleeplessness in America [infographic]

Tossing and Turning: Sleeplessness in America

Tossing and Turning -- Sleeplessness in America This text, courtesy of Top Nursing Programs, is provided as a convenience for automated screen readers. Sighted readers will prefer the Infographic below.

There aren’t many people who are happy with their sleep: They get too little, they feel restless, they don’t wake up refreshed, they can’t stay asleep. In fact, most Americans admit to having erratic sleep patterns, especially through the work week. So what does lack of sleep actually do to the body? And if we can’t add more hours to our sleep, how can we make the sleep we do get better?

Sleeping Beauty?

  • 8 to 8.5 — Hours of sleep per night adults generally require (1)
  • 1 in 3 — Adults who have insomnia at some point in their lives (1)
  • 43% of Americans 13-64 say they rarely or never get good sleep on weeknights.
  • 60% admit to suffering some sleep problem every night (snoring, waking constantly, feeling groggy in the morning). (2)
  • 15% of adults 19-64 say they sleep less than six hours on weeknights. (2)

Read More …

What is Functional Medicine?

3-legged stoolI first encountered the term Functional Medicine a few years ago during a lecture by Dr. Lane Sebring at a World Future Society dinner. In keeping with the focus of this organization, he titled his talk The Future of Medicine is … Not Medicine, which links to my notes and a video of the 71-min lecture. Dr. Sebring looked to anthropology to understand why, even with modern medicine, many of our diseases today didn’t even exist about a century ago when Heart Disease was almost unknown and Cancer was rare, not even making the top 10 as a cause of death.

The more he looked into the cause of illness, the more he became disillusioned and frustrated with modern healthcare and the traditional practice of providing “sick care” and just another pill in a “disease management” system that profits from illness. To focus his practice on health & wellness, he became an expert in Functional Medicine, which he describes as a form of evolutionary, integrative, holistic, or alternative medicine. Read More …

101 MiniTrends in Health Care

Watch for Trends Ahead

This image is from MiniTrends, a book by John Vanston that I strongly endorse. I’ve known John for years and did consulting work for his company, Technology Futures. His book inspired my Modern Health Talk vision. (Click image to see book. Go to end to hear about the MiniTrends conference.)

“What the Hell is happening to health care?”

“And is it an Opportunity or a Threat?”

Insights by Wayne Caswell, Founder of Modern Health Talk.

An awful lot has changed in just the last few years and even more will change in the near future, with the aim of reducing (or at least containing) our health care costs. What’s behind these MiniTrends, and what is their implication for providers, payers and consumers? That’s the $1.5 trillion question. Here I talk about many, many MiniTrends–surely you can find 101 of them if you look! 

“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.” – Charles Darwin

That quote is important, because 429 of the original Fortune 500 companies [1955] are no longer in business today. That’s a scary thought for those sitting at the top of the healthcare mountain, because they know they must adapt to the megatrend of health reform and Obamacare (the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act) or die. And they are looking down with fear at the hungry competitors who are already exploiting the many related minitrends, because for them these are times of great opportunity.

Read More …

Stroke and Sleep – Related

Here’s a story from AARP about TV personality Mark McEwen’s experience suffering from a Stroke. It prompted me to share some advice on how to avoid a stroke or reduce its effects.

 

For over 15 years, Mark McEwen was the face and voice of CBS’ morning show, until a misdiagnosed stroke almost killed him. Watch the inspiring story of how stroke changed Mark’s life forever, and how he fought to take back his life again. For more information on how to prevent stroke and know the symptoms visit stroke.org.

Read More …

Reduce Stress and Get a Better Night’s Rest

Reduce StressMore than half of Americans are losing sleep due to stress, according to Better-Sleep-Better-Life. Not getting enough sleep comes with a number of unwanted side effects, including some that are rather serious. A lack of sleep can cause motor vehicle accidents, injuries on the job, weight gain, and numerous health problems like heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, just to name a few. It can even contribute to greater stress, creating a vicious cycle. Fortunately there are a number of simple ways to help relieve stress so that you can sleep better at night.

Regular Exercise

Taking part in physical activity on a regular basis is one of the most important things you can do to relieve stress and get better sleep. Optimally, you should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercises like brisk walking, or 75 minutes of vigorous activities such as jogging or swimming laps each week. Take part in these activities at least two hours before going to bed, or it could have the opposite effect—keeping you awake. Read More …

Change Your Lifestyle, Save Your Life

Change Ahead -- but old habits die hardBy Sandy Getzky

Eating unhealthy foods occasionally or forgetting a workout one day won’t do much harm, but turning these into regular habits can affect your health. Although it’s tough to follow healthy habits when you’re not used to them, learning how is crucial for your well-being. Unhealthy habits increase your risk of developing heart disease, type 2 diabetes and other health problems. Here are some tips to help you form healthier lifestyle habits, which can reduce the risk of these dangers. Read More …

The Value of Integrative Medicine

Integrative Medicine - Treating you and your body far beyond the symptoms of a particular illness or perceived limitations of aging is the most logical approach to wellness.By Stephen C Schimpff, MD

Beginning with a deep understanding of medical science and years of training and experience, the primary care physician (PCP) needs to delve deeply into the patient’s personal, family and social setting in order to fully understand the context and causes of the patient’s illness. The PCP also needs to know when it is important or even critical to call upon others with specific knowledge, techniques or approaches that might be best suited for a particular patient. Sometimes this means calling in the cardiologist, the surgeon, the gastroenterologist or the psychiatrist. But it may also mean making good use of other modalities and practitioners such as chiropractic, social work, acupuncture, psychology, massage, nutritional therapy, exercise physiology [and sleep medicine]. Read More …

Managing My Costs of Care [ESSAY]

MedicaidDollarsManaging My Costs of Care is a well-written essay by Jay Warner.

I recommend it, because this one example shows just how easy it “should” be to cut healthcare costs in half to get down to what the rest of the world pays — for better care and outcomes — and save $1.5 trillion/year. It all comes down to getting the incentives right, because with employer-provided health insurance, Jay had no incentive (or ability) to comparison shop. Now he does.

The healthcare landscape is changing as payers pressure providers for more price transparency and seek other ways to contain costs and maintain profitability now that they can no longer cherry-pick the healthiest customers or cut them off when care gets too expensive.

Other disruptive changes include remote sensor monitoring (telemedicine) that can follow trends and identify problems earlier, remote consultations (telehealth) that can replace in-person office visits, medical tourism when it’s less expensive and has better outcomes than local surgeries, and an overall shift away from the fee-for-service insurance model. That model once served as pre-paid medical care, but now payers are starting to view insurance as protection against catastrophic illness and injury with consumers paying for the small stuff out of pocket. With that trend comes two others: (1) increased competition and (2) an increased focus on overall health and wellness, including nutrition, exercise, and sleep as it’s pillars.

A side benefit of wellness, beyond dramatic reductions in health care costs, is improved safety and performance. Restorative sleep, for example, is associated with improved alertness, attention, creativity, decision-making, focus, learning ability, mood, reaction & recovery times, and working memory, all of which contribute to better grades at school, better productivity at work and in sports, and fewer motor vehicle accidents and deaths.