Sleep Disorder is bad for health :-
Sleep disorder is not good for human health. It’s estimated that as many as 50% of the UAE population suffer from one or more sleep disorders. * From sitting bolt upright having endured a heart-stopping nightmare to lying awake for hours at a time struggling to peacefully drift into slumber, sleep for many seems elusive or fleeting.
Medical studies have suggested that a chronic lack of sleep can have devastating effects on our physical health, putting patients at risk of developing diabetes, heart disease or stroke, not to mention compromising our psychological well-being.
What an Accepted Medical Study Suggests
According to a study led by Postdoctoral Fellow Ivan Vargas at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, USA, lack of sleep seriously affects mood and personal outlook. This inability to think positively can manifest as clinical depression – a condition that affects 4% of the UAE population. *
Vargas posits that we tend to notice positive stimuli in our environment, focusing on positivity more than negativity. However, the diminished physical and psychological capabilities of sleep deprivation reverse that bias.
An Overview of the Medical Study
Working with a total of 40 healthy adults, Vargas’ study separated participants into two groups. The first group were instructed to sleep for eight hours. The second group were instructed to remain awake for 28 consecutive hours.
After each group had completed the task, each of the adults was asked to participate in a computer test programme designed to measure the accuracy and response time identifying happy, neutral and sad faces.
The Findings of the Medical Study
The team found that those participants suffering from acute sleep deprivation were less inclined to focus on the happy faces. Participants didn’t immediately focus on the negative, but they were less inclined to focus on the positive.
The study concluded that the symptoms of depression were elevated after a period of sleep deprivation. However, participants with a history of insomnia were less sensitive to the effects of sleep deprivation. It’s believed that the more experience people have with sleep deprivation, the more likely people are to develop coping mechanisms to modulate the effects of sleep deprivation.
The Implications of the Medical Study
Amidst growing acceptance that there’s a direct correlation between mood disorders and insomnia, the study’s findings seem to provide clear evidence that they amount of physical and psychological rest a person has directly effects their emotional state.
The annual clinical meeting for sleep medical physicians, SLEEP 2017 posited that cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) as effective treatment for depression, and insomnia. It’s believed that by re-aligning our thought processes, we can learn to react to daily visual and auditory stimuli and experiences to better equip ourselves to maintain a positive mental frame of mind.
Given that half of the UAE population suffers from one sleep disorder or another, it seems only rational that ongoing treatment plans include elements that help patients to better understand the root cause of their sleep disturbance, before initiating a treatment plan.
We should care about sleep disorder because sleep is the key to happiness? Yes and no. Other internal and external factors certainly plan a larger role in ongoing psychological well-being, not the least of which are socioeconomic status and security and support systems. However, what cannot be argued is that sleep disorders play a significant role in how happy we feel.
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