WESTCHESTER, Ill. - A study published in the May 1 issue of the journal SLEEP is the first known to report that short and long sleepers are more likely to have metabolic syndrome, or a combination of medical disorders that increase the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
The study, authored by Martica H. Hall, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, and colleagues, focused on 1,214 adults between 30-54 years of age.
According to the results, the odds for having the metabolic syndrome increased by more than 45 percent in both short and long sleepers. Short sleep duration was common, with 20 percent of the sample reporting sleep durations of less than six hours per night. In contrast, only eight percent of the sample reported sleep durations of longer than eight hours per night.
"This relationship was strongest in the group of men and women who slept less than six hours per night. On average, the odds of having the metabolic syndrome were nearly doubled in men and women who slept less than six hours, compared to those who slept between seven and eight hours per night," said Dr. Hall.
Experts recommend that adults get between seven and eight hours of nightly sleep.
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) offers the following tips on how to get a good night's sleep:
- Follow a consistent bedtime routine.
- Establish a relaxing setting at bedtime.
- Get a full night's sleep every night.
- Avoid foods or drinks that contain caffeine, as well as any medicine that has a stimulant, prior to bedtime.
- Do not bring your worries to bed with you.
- Do not go to bed hungry, but don't eat a big meal before bedtime either.
- Avoid any rigorous exercise within six hours of your bedtime.
- Make your bedroom quiet, dark and a little bit cool.
- Get up at the same time every morning.
Those who suspect that they might be suffering from a sleep disorder are encouraged to consult with their primary care physician or a sleep specialist.
SLEEP is the official journal of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC, a joint venture of the AASM and the Sleep Research Society.
SleepEducation.com, a patient education Web site created by the AASM, provides information about various sleep disorders, the forms of treatment available, recent news on the topic of sleep, sleep studies that have been conducted and a listing of sleep facilities.
For a copy of this article, entitled, "Self-reported sleep duration is associated with the metabolic syndrome in midlife adults", or to arrange an interview with an AASM spokesperson regarding this study, please contact Jim Arcuri, public relations coordinator, at (708)492-0930, ext. 9317, or email@example.com.
SLEEP 2008, the 22nd Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies and the world's largest annual gathering of sleep scientists and sleep medicine professionals, will take place in Baltimore, Maryland, from June 9-12, 2008. SLEEP 2008 will bring together an international body of 5,000 leading researchers and clinicians, who will present and discuss over 1,100 new findings and medical developments related to sleep and sleep disorders. The deadline to register is Friday, May 30, 2008. Contact Jim Arcuri at (708)492-0930, ext. 9317, or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or to register for a free press pass. More details, including the program schedule and a list of invited lecturers, are available at www.SleepMeeting.org.