According to research, people with symptoms of insomnia, including trouble sleeping, falling asleep, and waking up too early, may be at increased risk of stroke.
The study also revealed that the risk was much higher in people under the age of 50. The study does not prove that symptoms of insomnia cause a stroke; it only shows a connection.
There is a wide range of therapies that could help people improve sleep quality, so establishing which sleep problems result in increased risk of stroke could allow earlier behavioral therapies or treatments for people experiencing sleep problems. sleep that might reduce your risk of stroke later on. in the life.
The study included 31,126 people with an average age of 61. They had no history of stroke when the study began.
Subjects were asked 4 questions about how often they had difficulty falling asleep, difficulty waking up during the night, difficulty waking up too early, and also an inability to go back to sleep, as well as how rested they felt. the next morning.
Response options were most of the time, occasionally or almost never, or never. Scores ranged from 0 to 8, with a higher score indicating more severe insomnia symptoms.
Then, the individuals were observed for an average of 9 years. Throughout that time, 2,101 cases of stroke were reported.
After adjusting for other factors that could affect stroke risk, such as smoking, alcohol use, and physical activity levels, people with 1 to 4 symptoms of insomnia were found to have a 16% increased risk of stroke compared to people without any symptoms. insomnia symptoms.
Of the 19,149 people with 1 to 4 symptoms of insomnia, 1,300 suffered a stroke. Of the 6,282 people without any symptoms of insomnia, 365 suffered a stroke. People with 5 to 8 symptoms of insomnia had a 51% increased risk of stroke. Of the 5,695 people with 5 to 8 symptoms of insomnia, 436 had a stroke.
A stronger relationship between stroke and insomnia symptoms was seen in people younger than 50, with those who had 5 to 8 insomnia symptoms having nearly 4 times the risk of stroke compared with people without any symptoms of insomnia.
Of the 458 people under the age of 50 with 5 to 8 symptoms of insomnia, 27 had a stroke. People aged 50 and over who had the same number of insomnia symptoms had a 38% increased risk of stroke compared to people without any insomnia symptoms. Of the 654 people age 50 and older with 5 to 8 symptoms, 33 experienced a stroke.
This difference in risk between these 2 age groups could be due to the increased incidence of stroke as we age. The list of risk factors for stroke, including diabetes and hypertension, can increase as people age, making symptoms of insomnia one of many possible factors.
This difference suggests that managing insomnia symptoms when you are younger might be an effective approach to preventing stroke. This relationship increased the most for people with depression, heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
One limitation of the study was that the insomnia symptoms were self-reported, so the information provided could have been inaccurate.
Do you want to use our images on your site? Right click on the image to insert the code