Category Archives: Sleep Health

Sleep Health: “The Neurology And Psychology Of Insomnia”

From a Psychology Today online article:

For those with insomnia, however, the stressor appears to be the lack of sleep, and the desire for sleep becomes a stressor in itself. In other words, the fixation on getting sleep leads to feelings of stress over not falling asleep, which begins a vicious loop. According to a model first proposed by Kales et al. in 1976, patients The Anatomy of Insomniacs infograpiccan develop a conditioned fear of not being able to sleep, which puts them in a state of hyperarousal when they attempt to fall asleep. This makes their inability to sleep a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Insomnia is the most common sleep condition in the world, with half of adults globally reporting occasional episodes. Chronic insomnia, though far less prevalent, affects as many as 10 to 15 percent of the adult population.

Though these sleep problems are extremely common, the neurobiological mechanisms behind insomnia are not entirely understood. Research suggests that emotional stressors do play an outsized role in contributing to sleep problems, and it is well documented that mood and anxiety disorders are common comorbidities with insomnia. This seems like common sense. Emotional arousal, whether due to a state of anxiety or because of intrusive thoughts, makes it difficult to relax, thereby inhibiting one’s ability to either initiate sleep or get back to sleep after waking.

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New Books: “The Shapeless Unease – A Year Of Not Sleeping” By Samantha Harvey (January 2020)

The Shapeless Unease A Year of Not Sleeping Samantha Harvey book January 2020In 2016, Samantha Harvey began to lose sleep. She tried everything to appease her wakefulness: from medication to therapy, changes in her diet to changes in her living arrangements. Nothing seemed to help.

The Shapeless Unease is Harvey’s darkly funny and deeply intelligent anatomy of her insomnia, an immersive interior monologue of a year without one of the most basic human needs. Original and profound, and narrated with a lucid breathlessness, this is a startlingly insightful exploration of memory, writing and influence, death and the will to survive, from “this generation’s Virginia Woolf” (Telegraph).

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Reading Lists: “The Best Neuroscience Books Of 2019” (TheScientist)

TheScientist Logo

Bury your nose in tales of neurosyphilis, gender identity, the medical mysteries of sleep disorders, and more. JAMES DOLBOW

The Nocturnal Brain by Guy Leschziner

The Nocturnal Brain: Nightmares, Neuroscience and the Secret World of Sleep 

Inspired by the legendary book The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat by the late Oliver Sacks, neurologist and sleep scientist Guy Leschziner tells the curious true stories of his patients, their fascinating sleep disorders, and the neuroscience behind each. Also like the works of Sacks, The Nocturnal Brain is written with considerable introspection and wonder about each patient’s case, taking you on a journey from the first patient encounter, to diagnosis, and through treatment. The unusual and often bizarre cases will keep you intrigued and immersed, and make this unique book one you will find yourself looking forward to making time to read.

How The Brain Lost Its Mind Allan H. Ropper MD and Brian David BurrellHow The Brain Lost Its Mind: Sex, Hysteria, and the Riddle of Mental Health

In this mindful reflection on American and European pasts, authors Allan H. Ropper and Brian Burrell, also the writers of Reaching Down the Rabbit Hole, address our modern concept of mental illness by reviewing the interesting true story of the syphilis epidemic of the 19th century. This little known and fascinating history of neurosyphilis—how it was handled by society and medicine and how it shaped today’s understanding of mental illness—helps address not only why many stigmas exist, but why so many have persisted. This book will take you on an incredible journey through the puzzling diagnosis, eclectic treatments, and lasting social effects of the neurosyphilis epidemic of the 1800s, as well as offer important insight into the difference between diseases of the brain and the mind. This book is perfect for any scientist, psychologist, or historian with even the smallest interest in medical history or mental health theory.

Compassionomics The Revolutionary Scientific Evidence That Caring Makes A Difference Stephen Trzeciak and Anthony MazzarelliCompassionomics: The Revolutionary Scientific Evidence that Caring Makes a Difference

It is no secret that today’s medical atmosphere scarsely resembles anything similar to that of 50 years ago. Many have argued that this is in large part due to a lack of compassion in the modern medical system. If this is the case, where have we gone wrong, and is there scientific evidence to support that compassion is even beneficial to healthcare, personal relationships, and professional lives? These questions are raised and explored by authors Stephen Trzeciak and Anthony Mazzarelli through the telling of true stories of medical providers and patients that help demonstrate the incredible effect of the human connection. Coupled perfectly with these gripping stories are easily readable summaries of decades of research studying the effects of compassion as well as its implications in our lives. Addressing topics from healthcare cost to provider burnout, from caring for others to caring for ourselves, this evidence-based analysis of the importance of compassion is a must-read for anyone interested in the social science and psychology of the care we give in all settings of our lives.

To read more: https://www.the-scientist.com/news-opinion/opinion–the-best-neuroscience-books-of-2019-66863

Healthiest Adults: Early Risers With 7-8 Hours Of Sleep, No Insomnia Or Daytime Drowsiness

From a European Heart Journal study:

European Society of Cardiology logoWhen the five sleep factors were collapsed into binary categories of low risk vs. high risk (reference group), early chronotype, adequate sleep duration, free of insomnia, and no frequent daytime sleepiness were each independently associated with incident CVD, with a 7%, 12%, 8%, and 15% lower risk, respectively (Table 3). Early chronotype, adequate sleep duration, and free of insomnia were independently associated with a significantly reduced risk of CHD; while only adequate sleep duration was associated with stroke.European Society of Cardiology Sleep patterns, genetic susceptibity and incident cardiovascular disease a prospective study of 385,292 participants lowest risk factorsCardiovascular disease (CVD), including coronary heart disease (CHD) and stroke, is among the leading causes of mortality globally.1 In addition to traditional lifestyle behaviours, emerging evidence has implicated several unhealthy sleep behaviours were important risk factors for CVD.2,3 For example, short or long sleep duration,4–9 late chronotype,10,11 insomnia,12–17 snoring,18,19 and excessive daytime sleepiness20,21 were associated with a 10–40% increased CVD risk. European Society of Cardiology Sleep patterns, genetic susceptibity and incident cardiovascular disease a prospective study of 385,292 participants

 

To read more: https://academic.oup.com/eurheartj/advance-article/doi/10.1093/eurheartj/ehz849/5678714

Sleep Podcasts: Older Adults Are More Likely To Suffer From Chronic (Long-Term) Insomnia

InsomniaBeyond the constant tossing and turning of a sleepless night, it might surprise you to know that insomnia is affecting a fair hunk of the Australian population. A recent study released by the Sleep Health Foundation found that 15 per cent of us suffer from chronic insomnia disorder, and very few people are choosing to access help.

Guests:

Professor Robert Adams, Professor in Respiratory and Sleep Medicine for Flinders University, and lead researcher for Chronic Insomnia Disorder in Australia study for Sleep Health Foundation

Dr Moira Junge, health psychologist specialising in treating sleep disorders, board member for Sleep Health Foundation

Website: https://radio.abc.net.au/programitem/pga7dxBbm7