Constantly tossing and turning at night, watching the clock tick away, not being able to fall asleep, or consistently waking up at random hours of the night and not being able to fall back asleep may all be symptoms of a condition known as insomnia. While many people tend to shrug off insomnia as bothersome annoyance, researchers have found evidence that insomnia increases an individual’s stroke risks. Although the direct cause and effect relationship is not yet fully understood, according to a study published April 3rd
in the American Heart Association journal Stroke
, it is thought that insomnia changes cardiovascular health through systematic inflammation, impaired glucose tolerance, increased blood pressure and/or sympathetic hyperactivity.
After reviewing the randomly-selected health records of more than 21,000 people with insomnia and 64,000 non-insomniacs in Taiwan, researchers discovered that:
*those with insomnia had a 54% greater risk for subsequent stroke hospitalizations over a 4 year time span
*18-34 year old insomniacs had a stroke risk of 8X higher than non-insomniacs
*for those over the age of 35 the stroke risks declined
*diabetic insomniacs also had greater stroke risks
Fortunately there are treatments available and steps that can be taken to help reduce stroke risks.
*live an active lifestyle
*follow a well-balanced diet plan
*limit alcohol use
*make changes to your nighttime routine
*try over-the-counter sleep aids
Researchers and healthcare practitioners also emphasize the importance of discussing your sleeping troubles with your healthcare provider, who will analyze your symptoms and risk factors and then work with you to develop a customized treatment plan to help manage and treat the insomnia, as well as any other underlying health issues. Your doctor may recommend medication, cognitive therapy, some behavioral changes, or even a combination of different therapies.
Mountainside Medical Equipment knows just how important sleep is to your health and overall well-being, which is why we’ve dedicated a whole section of our website to insomnia
, providing you with a wide variety of sleep aids that are designed to help you fall asleep and stay asleep so that you get the sleep you need to live a happy, productive, and healthy lifestyle.