Insomania may up heart attack risk by 45 per cent: Study

Insomania may up heart attack risk by 45 per cent: Study

Researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim found that people who suffer from insomnia have up to a 45 per cent greater risk of heart problems than those who sleep soundly.

"Sleep problems are common and fairly easy to treat.
So it's important that people are aware of this connection between insomnia and heart attack and talk to their doctor if they're having symptoms," lead researcher Dr Lars Erik Laugsand was quoted as saying by the Daily Mail.

For their study, the researchers looked at heart risks related to three major insomnia symptoms compared to people who rarely or never had these problems.

They found that those who had struggled to fall asleep almost daily in the last month had a 45 per cent higher heart attack risk.

Those who had problems staying asleep almost every night in the last month had a 30 per cent higher heart attack risk, the researchers found.

And people who didn't wake up feeling refreshed in the morning more than once a week had a 27 per cent higher heart attack risk. The risk also increases with each additional insomnia symptom, they said.

The study, published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association, was based on 52,610 Norwegian adults who answered questions about insomnia as part of a national health survey in 1995-97.

The researchers examined hospital records and Norway's National Cause of Death Registry to identify 2,368 people who had first-time heart attacks during the following 11 years.

They used survival analysis to adjust for factors that could influence the results such as age, sex, marital status, education level, blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, weight, exercise and shift work.

They also considered depression and anxiety, both of which can cause insomnia.
Up to 33 per cent of people in the general population experience at least one insomnia symptom, according to researchers. Previous studies had also linked insomnia to heart disease, including high blood pressure and heart attacks.

While it's unclear why insomnia is linked to higher heart attack risk, some suggested sleep problems affect heart attack risk factors such as high blood pressure and inflammation.

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