Could Your Job be Affecting Your Brain Power?

November 4th, 2014
Could Your Job be Affecting Your Brain Power?

Many of us claim to feel tired and dazed after a long day at work, but a new study has suggested that working could actually be responsible for dulling the brain cells and ageing the brain prematurely.

A study that has been published in the Occupational and Environmental Medicine journal claims that working shifts can prematurely age the brain and affect brain power. Researchers discovered that working shifts for a decade aged the brain by up to 6 years.

Researchers found that the brain had some powers of recovery following the cessation of shift work, but it took up to five years for the brain to return to normal.

Experts believe that the results of the study could be instrumental in research on Alzheimer’s disease, as many patients suffer from interrupted sleep patterns.

The natural set-up for the brain is to be active during the day and restful during the night and with shift work, this balance is modified and the body goes against the body clock. Studies carried out in the past have already suggested that those who work antisocial hours have a higher risk of potentially serious health conditions, including some forms of cancer and obesity.

Researchers from Swansea University and the University of Toulouse have now suggested that shift work can have a negative impact on the mind, as well as the body. Three thousand people were involved in the study and took part in memory, cognitive thinking and speed thought tests. The findings showed that people who had done shift work for at least ten years had the same brain age as those who were on average 6.5 years older than them. After finishing shift work, it took around 5 years for the brain to return to normal.



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