A new study found that experiencing insomnia or sleeping for five hours or less each night increases the risk of having a heart attack. Researchers claim that the findings emphasize how critical it is to prioritize getting enough sleep.
Data published in the journal Clinical Cardiology indicates that women are more likely than men to get a heart attack. Between 10% and 30% of people in the US suffer from chronic insomnia, which is the most common sleep disorder. Compared to men, women have a 40% higher lifetime risk of insomnia.
The study included more than 1.2 million people from the United States, the United Kingdom, Norway, Germany, Taiwan, and China; over 96% of them had never before experienced a heart attack. Almost 50% (43%) of the participants were women.
Thirteen percent of participants claimed to have insomnia, either because they had a formal diagnosis or because they displayed one of these three symptoms: difficulties getting asleep, trouble staying asleep, or trouble waking up early and having trouble falling back to sleep.
Over the course of an average nine-year follow-up, 2,406 insomniacs and 12,398 non-insomniacs experienced heart attacks.
The researchers also looked at any potential links between sleep duration and heart health. When compared to sleeping six to eight hours each night, having a heart attack increased your risk by 1.38 and 1.56, respectively.
“Insomnia is the most common sleep disorder, but in many ways, it’s no longer just an illness, it’s more of a life choice. We just don’t prioritise sleep as much as we should,” indicated Yomna E. Dean, a medical student at Alexandria University in Alexandria, Egypt, and study author.
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There was no appreciable difference in the risk of heart attack between people who reported sleeping five hours or less each night and those who claimed to have nine or more hours of sleep, which is further evidence that too much sleep may be hazardous.
Heart attacks are the leading cause of death for the majority of racial and ethnic groups in the United States, where one happens every 40 seconds.