28 Feb WORLD SLEEP DAY: March 2020
World Sleep Day is an annual event to raise awareness of sleep disorders and the burden that they place on society. World Sleep Day 2020 will be held on Friday, March 13, 2020. Here at the Wesley Hopsital Sleep Disorders Centre we are looking to raise awareness to help a better understanding of sleep conditions in our community. We plan to chat to our friends at ABC radio Brisbane, present to a multi-disciplinary staff cohort about sleep hygiene and shift work. We also have a group of school students from a local high school coming in to join us and see what a high quality sleep service does.
The World Sleep Day website has a range of high quality materials to help you learn all about a “Better Sleep, Better Life, Better Planet”. Some of the key talking points are mentioned below (note: uses mostly US based data).
Three elements of good quality sleep are:
- Duration: The length of sleep should be sufficient for the sleeper to be rested and alert the following day.
- Continuity: Sleep periods should be seamless without fragmentation.
- Depth: Sleep should be deep enough to be restorative.
Importance of Sound, Restorative Sleep:
- Good quality and restorative sleep is essential for day-to-day functioning. Studies suggest that sleep quality rather than quantity has a greater impact on quality of life and daytime functioning.
- Healthy sleep in children will improve the child’s overall wellness and development. WORLD SLEEP SOCIETY has created the 10 commandments of Healthy Sleep for Children, available at worldsleepday.org
- Poor quality sleep has a greater negative impact on health, well-being and satisfaction with life than the quantity of sleep a person gets.
- Quality sleep is responsible for alertness, improved functioning the following day and better quality of life.
Consequences of Sleep Disorders
- Sleep disorders cause significant individual and societal burden and form a serious public health problem.
- Obstructive sleep apnea significantly impacts health and well-being. The drop in oxygen that occurs when breathing stops due to OSA puts a strain on the heart and can lead to a number of serious health conditions.
- Directly or indirectly, disrupted sleep can have a negative effect on family life and relationships by affecting a person’s mood and the way in which they are able to perform daily activities and interact socially.
Extent of the Epidemic
- 35% of people do not feel they get enough sleep, impacting both their physical and mental health.
- Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) affects approximately 4% of the adult population. 21 If not properly managed, OSA can have a significant impact on a person’s health and well-being.
- Restless Legs Syndrome is a common disorder and occurs in between 3-10% of the population, although the number of people affected and the severity of the condition differs between countries.
- People who have OSA stop breathing repeatedly during sleep. OSA is caused by a blockage of the upper airway. The collapse of the airway may be due to factors such as a large tongue, extra tissue or decreased muscle tone holding the airway open.
- Each breathing pause can last from 10 seconds to more than a minute and is accompanied by a drop in oxygen associated with each event. The events may occur 5 to 50 times or more each hour. This puts a strain on the heart and can lead to a number of serious health conditions (U.S. Dept. of Health & Human Services, NIH, 2009).
Known Consequences: Some Statistics
- A US study has estimated the annual costs of insomnia to be between $92.5 billion and $107.5 billion.
- 71,000 people suffer injuries every year due to sleep-related accidents.
- 1,550 people die because of sleep-related accidents.
- 46% of individuals with frequent sleep disturbances report missing work or events, or making errors at work, compared to 15% of healthy sleepers.
The importance of circadian rhythms in healthy sleep
- Circadian rhythms refer to a cycle within the body. Natural factors from within the body produce circadian rhythms, but environmental factors such as sunlight also affect them.
- Preserving regular Circadian rhythms have been found to lower the risk of sleep disorders, mental health disorders and chronic health issues such as obesity and diabetes.
- Sound sleep is one of the three pillars of good health along with a balanced diet and regular exercise.
- Individuals who get an entire night’s sleep without any interruptions experience lower rates of high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and other chronic illnesses.