Insomnia is one of the common sleep problems that people commonly face. Even one of Enrique Iglesias’s album is titled ‘Insomnia.’ The latest study now dives into the negative consequences of this sleep concern and answers if it can kill you?
While some researchers think that insomnia is not a killer, others are not so sure and think that may be it can turn out to be fatal in the long haul. This study that we are talking about is a meta-analysis published in the Sleep Medicine Reviews.
Researchers pooled the data from 17 other studies and covered a participant pool of 37 million folks. Of these, 10% suffered from insomnia. The studies followed their participants between 2.2 and 28 years. The average stood at 11.6 years in follow-up time.
The researchers found out that the risk of dying due to insomnia was similar for all the people with or without insomnia. However, one study that accounted for 96% of the data and when it was excluded from the study, the results showed that there was a slightly higher risk of death due to insomnia.
The results were the same even as the scientists took other factors into account such as smoking, sleep medications, and obesity. One of these studies learned that persistent insomnia such as the one lasting for six or more years increased the odds of death due to lung disease or cardiovascular health, or any other cause as compared to people who did not have insomnia.
This study boasted a participant pool of 1,409 individuals and followed its people for 20 years. Essentially, insomnia gives a person hard time falling asleep or staying asleep. A person may also wake up too early or he may not be able to go back to his slumber if he wakes up in between his sleep.
Generally speaking, such a sleep condition can increase the risk of anxiety, substance abuse, depression, heart disease, and high blood pressure as well. It can also affect the quality of your life and your level of alertness during the day.
Since researchers are at odds with each other, it is hard to reach any definite claims. The best that you can do though is to take care of your sleep. If you feel that insomnia makes it hard for you to sleep or disturbs you slumber, then it is best to consult a doctor.
Moving forward: How to sleep well?
Sleeplessness is a serious concern as it negatively affects your health. At the same time, it also increases the risks that come associated with drowsy driving. Every year, an estimated 71,000 injuries and 1,550 deaths occur due to the driver’s sleeplessness.
All this accounts for monetary losses that add up to $12.5 billion. Hence, proper rest is crucial. In this context, some of the steps that you can take include:
- Take care of your sleep hygiene
Sleep hygiene covers all the steps that you can take for better sleep. For instance, blocking out any source of light and sound disturbances. You can also prepare your bed and dim the lights an hour before bed
- Limit the use of smartphones and other gadgets before bed
Smartphones and gadgets can emit blue light that disturbs your sleep cycle. The blue light confuses your sleep–wake cycle into thinking that the artificial light is daylight. Owing to this, one’s sleep gets disturbed. This is why you should limit the use of smartphones and other such gadgets before sleeping. What’s more, don’t check your phone if you wake up in the middle of the night.
- Don’t overeat before sleeping
Overeating or just eating dinner before slumbering can cause acid reflux in certain cases. At the same time, drinking too much water or any other fluid can disturb your sleep due to the need to use the washroom.
- Maintain a sleep schedule and try not to nap in the afternoon
Maintaining a sleep routine is also crucial. It means that you wake up at the same time even if you have not slept well during the night. To maintain your sleep routine, you should also try not to nap in the afternoon, which can ruin your sleep during the day.