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Background: Older adults often face sleep disturbance or cognitive decline that goes beyond the scope of normal aging. The present study examined the relationship between self-reported sleep quality and self-reported daytime attention in a community-dwelling sample of older men at the between-persons and within-persons levels of association.
Methods: Thirty-eight participants (M age =75.36 years, SD age =7.51 years, range=66-90 years) completed a twice-daily sleep diary for one week. Sleep quality and attention were assessed using a single-item 0-10 rating scales from the morning diary (“How was the quality of your sleep last night?”) and from the evening diary (“How was your attention today?”). A two-level multilevel model was parameterized with days nested within individuals to examine whether nightly sleep quality predicts an individual’s daily attention rating.
Results: A multilevel model predicting self-reported attention revealed (1) older individuals who reported better sleep quality reported having better daily attention [Beta=0.64, t(248.15)=10.12, p<0.001] and (2) following a day of above-average sleep quality, older individuals experienced above-average attention [Beta=0.16, t(259.79)=2.75, p=.006].
Conclusion: Not only was overall sleep quality associated with self-reported attention, but a good night's sleep was associated with better self-reported next-day attention. Results point to the potential importance of fluctuations in sleep quality for daytime functioning. Interventions aimed at improving nightly sleep consistency may be worth exploring as methods to improve daytime cognitive functioning in older adults.
Support: This work was supported by the Sleep Research Society Foundation/Jazz Pharmaceuticals (001JP13, PI: Dzierzewski) and by the National Institute on Aging of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number K23AG049955 (PI: Dzierzewski), and National Heart Lung and Blood Institute at the National Institutes of Health under award number K24HL143055 (PI: Martin). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health or the Department of Veterans Affairs.
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