Too stressed to sleep

Gregory, Alice and Barclay, Nicola (2009) Too stressed to sleep. The Psychologist, 22 (8). pp. 676-677. ISSN 0952-8229

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It is all too clear that when we are stressed we find it hard to sleep. A large proportion of you will have experienced sleep disturbances, say, before exams; even the best sleepers occasionally suffer from sleepless and seemingly endless nights before big events. The undeniable links between stress and sleep have also been highlighted in the DSM-IV (American Psychiatric Association, 1994), where sleep difficulties (including difficulties falling and staying asleep) are amongst symptoms for the stress-related anxiety disorder PTSD. Of course, stress and sleep are linked in children too – relevant stressors documented in previous research include separations from key figures (e.g. parents, siblings, friends) as well as rarer events such as inhabiting war-zones (for a review, see Sadeh, 1996).
While it is clear that stressful events and poor sleep can occur at the same time, what is less clear is whether stress experienced early in life is linked to sleep difficulties later on. Here we refer to studies examining this issue and provide examples of mechanisms that could underscore these associations.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: C800 Psychology
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Psychology
Depositing User: Ellen Cole
Date Deposited: 16 Dec 2011 11:50
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2019 16:28

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