The Week in Sleep News: July 22, 2022

You can rest easy knowing you can enjoy your cup of coffee in the morning with added benefits from a new scientific study.

Two people in bed reading newspapers beneath text that reads "Sleep News Week of July 22, 2022"

Here’s the sleep news for this week:

Keep Drinking Your Coffee

Need coffee to feel awake each morning? Don't stress: It could actually be good for you. A new study from the American College of Physicians found that moderate consumption of coffee was associated with a lower risk of death. The study looked at the dietary consumption of sugar-sweetened, artificially sweetened, and unsweetened coffee of 171,616 participants without cardiovascular disease or cancer over 10 years. They found that compared to the noncoffee drinkers, consumers of unsweetened or sugar-sweetened coffee had a lower risk of all-cause mortality. So keep having that morning cup of coffee, just maybe hold off before sleep.

Short Sleep Duration Causally Linked to Rheumatoid Arthritis

Short sleep duration is causally associated with an increased risk for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), according to a study published in Frontiers in Public Health. Researchers looked to examine whether sleep disorders are linked with rheumatoid arthritis. While scientists found no evidence of a correlation between rheumatoid arthritis and frequent insomnia, a causal effect was seen for short sleep duration (six hours) on rheumatoid arthritis.

Why Do We Sleep?

New insights into brain activity when sleeping may help create tools for those suffering from neurological diseases. The study, published in the Journal of Neuroscience, may help to explain how sleep helps individuals remember things and pick up new skills. It's long been known that a phenomenon known as “replay” takes place during sleep. Replay is a mechanism used by the brain to recall new information. However, replay had only been shown in animals.

This study found the first recorded instance of replay happening in humans. Most of the replay researchers detected in the study occurred during slow-wave sleep, also known as deep rest. Replay was much less likely to be detected while in REM sleep, the phase most commonly associated with dreaming. Scientists think the findings of this study will help us better understand the brain and the function of sleep.

Smart Pillowcase

Researchers from Gunagxi University and the Chinese Academy of Science have created a pillowcase that tracks your head movement in your sleep. The new smart pillowcase aims to provide more accurate results and insights into sleep and sleep disorders. The pillow uses TENGs, which stands for triboelectric nanogenerators. TENGs use movement to generate electrical current that powers the pillowcase itself. While this pillowcase is still in testing, researchers believe they can get it on the market in three to five years.

In sleep-centric social media...

We've all been there! Twitter user @townsendyesmate perfectly describes the pull to doomscrool even though you know it's not going to be particularly helpful.

A tweet from twitter user Mike Townsende
@townsendyesmate / Twitter