Light is known to be an important modulator of circadian rhythms. We tested the hypothesis that an enduring increase in the daytime environmental illumination level improves restactivity rhythm disturbances in demented patients. Actigraphy was performed before, during, and after 4 weeks of increased illumination in the living rooms of 22 patients with dementia clinically diagnosed as probable Alzheimer’s disease, multi-infarct dementia, dementia associated with alcoholism, or normal pressure hydrocephalus. The results indicated that during increased illumination, the stability of the rest-activity rhythm increased in patients with intact vision, but not in visually impaired patients.
NPCRA Reference Paper
Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, circadian rhythm disturbance, bright light, sleep, actigraphy