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People who have trouble sleeping are more likely to die sooner – and diabetics with insomnia have an 87% higher risk, study finds

  • A new study looked at 500, are there different strengths of advair 000 middle-aged UK participants and asked if they had trouble sleeping
  • People with type 2 diabetes  and sleep disturbances were 87% more likely to die of any cause than those without these issues
  • They were also  12% more likely to die within the next 10 years than those who had diabetes but not frequent sleep disturbances
  • Researchers say this is the first study to examine the effect of the combination of insomnia and diabetes on mortality risk

People who have trouble sleeping are at higher risk of dying than those without sleep problems, especially if they are diabetics, a new study suggests.

Researchers examined data from around 500,000 middle-aged UK participants who were asked if they had trouble falling asleep or woke up in the middle of the night.

They found that people with frequent sleep problems are at a higher risk of dying than those without sleep problems.

During the nine years of the research, the study found that people with type 2 diabetes were 87 percent more likely to die of any cause than people without diabetes or sleep disturbances.

Additionally, results showed people with diabetes and sleep problems were 12 percent more likely to die over this period than those who had diabetes but not frequent sleep disturbances. 

People with frequent sleep problems are at a higher risk of dying than those without sleep problems, researchers have said (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

‘Although we already knew that there is a strong link between poor sleep and poor health, this illustrates the problem starkly,’ said first author Dr Malcolm von Schantz, professor of chronobiology from the University of Surrey.

‘The question asked when the participants enrolled does not necessarily distinguish between insomnia and other sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea.

‘Still, from a practical point of view it doesn’t matter.

‘Doctors should take sleep problems as seriously as other risk factors and work with their patients on reducing and mitigating their overall risk.’

The team says says that to their knowledge, this is the first study to examine the effect of the combination of insomnia and diabetes on mortality risk. 

‘Diabetes alone was associated with a 67% increased risk of mortality,’ said senior co-author Dr Kristen Knutson of Northwestern University.

‘However, the mortality for participants with diabetes combined with frequent sleep problems was increased to 87 percent.

‘In order words, it is particularly important for doctors treating people with diabetes to also investigate sleep disorders and consider treatments where appropriate.’

The study, published in the Journal of Sleep Research, notes a limitation of the research was that participants were only asked one question – do you have trouble falling asleep at night or do you wake up in the middle of the night?

Researchers say this did not not assess daytime consequences and the disturbances are not equivalent to a clinically diagnosed insomnia disorder.

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