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Insomnia And Alcohol May Be The Cause of Death For Many

Sleep has always been recognized as a necessity as far as health and wellness goes, and while treatments for insomnia have long been sought after, it is more important now than ever before that people learn to get a handle on their sleep disorders. New research has shown that insomnia and alcohol may be predominant causes or influences in a path to eventual suicide. This was determined by Michael Nadorff, Ph. D. and his research team from the Mississippi State University, which is located in Starkville, Mississippi. Science Daily explains: “Further analysis revealed that insomnia symptoms explained a significant proportion of the relationship between alcohol and suicide risk. For men, there was no direct effect of alcohol use on suicide risk, but there was a significant indirect effect of alcohol use increasing suicide risk through insomnia symptoms.”

This is extremely important to the medical community and psychological community as it expresses the associated risks of alcohol and sleep deprivation in regards to the relationship it plays in suicide and depression. This could give a fighting chance in reducing the risk of suicide and better understanding how to intervene and when to intervene in order to save lives and get help for the people that need it the most.

How This Study Came To Be

The most recently developed study on this subject was published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, along with facts that expressed fifteen to twenty percent of adults in North American have some form of insomnia or sleep disorder that has been active in their lives for three or more months. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine has concluded that most sleep disorders are more present in women than in men, which may have something to do with the way that women deal with stress and how much anxiety is present in the lives of women when compared to men. Oxford Journal states: “Impulsivity and aggression are strongly implicated in suicidal behavior. Constructs related to aggression and impulsivity confer additional risk for suicidal behavior in people with alcohol dependence. Lower serotonin activity is tied to increased aggression/impulsivity, which in turn may enhance the probability of suicidal behavior.”

Three hundred and seventy-five undergraduates from universities within the southeastern region of the United States were asked to submit a survey that asked questions regarding nightmares, the consumption of alcohol, insomnia, and the possibility of suicide risk. This was important data to process as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have suggested that there are more than eighty-eight thousand deaths annually in the United States from alcohol consumption alone, and that alcohol consumption has also been proven to shorten the life span of drinkers by up to thirty years. Thirty-eight thousand deaths annually within the United States are due to suicide, making it the tenth highest death cause in America as recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Sleep Plays A Large Role

Despite the elements of alcohol rising strong suspicion in causes for suicide, sleep deprivation cannot be ignored as a high indicator of possible mental struggles. Whether it causes the depression, or is a side effect of mental illness, not getting enough sleep can cause high levels of anxiety, an inability to focus or form rational thoughts, irritability, and depression. The United States National Library of Medicine suggests: “Findings indicate that suicidal ideation and behaviors are closely associated with sleep complaints, and in some cases, this association exists above and beyond depression. Several cross-sectional investigations indicate a unique association between nightmares and suicidal ideation, whereas the relationship between insomnia and suicidality requires further study. “

Nightmares, sometimes brought on by an inability to achieve proper rest, or residual stimulants in the system during sleep time can be largely problematic. This is another area where alcohol use may be related, as many drinkers have made complaints that they had nightmares following an evening with alcohol. Alcohol in the system during sleep can disrupt sleep, and make it difficult for you to fall into the REM cycle that your brain needs to properly hibernate and reflect on daily events. Without this cycle your body may not rest properly, and the following day you will be tired, and may find it difficult to focus or live life normally.

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