Growing Mental Health Disorders and Associated Sleeping Problems Amid Covid-19

Regardless of the paramount importance for sleep to ensure mental and physical health, sleep hygiene is commonly compromised. It has become adverse amid the Covid-19 pandemic, a new epidemiological review analysis indicated for the first time, from a team of investigators from the Texas A&M University, US., China, Bangladesh, Bangladesh, and India.

Study findings indicate that the prevalence of sleep disorders has increased after the Covid-19 outbreak, particularly during the phase of lockdown. It further highlighted the wide range of social and demographic factors to identify the population groups who are vulnerable to the adverse outcomes of sleep disorder with limited interventions.

These evidences will help the clinicians and health officials to make informed choices for better management of patients, helping to find better intervention to prevent these sleep disorders from getting worse.

While health officials are trying hard to prevent the spread of Covid-19, the safety precautions to ensure the safe quarantine measures have taken a heavy toll on people’s mental health. When analyzing the past pandemics, it has been reported historically that they predispose to panic, anxiety, depression, irritability, somatic disorder, and insomnia.

Furthermore, it was reported that high level of stress and trauma-related disorders were found to be caused because of isolation. Moreover, external factors like prolonged isolated periods, fear of infection, uncertainty, disappointment, stigma, fatigue, inadequate knowledge regarding the disease, insufficient supplies, and economic damage; altogether it predisposes to the negative mental health.

Source: World Sleep Society

Therefore, growing mental health disorders including sleep disorders have become a global burden that is found to be associated with the psychological stressors. Sleep is an integral component to ensure the mental health.

Breach in its normal sleep cycle can result in insufficient sleep, insomnia, might mares, fatigue, and daytime instability. In US, over 50-70 million adults are believed to have one sleep disorders, among the Australians and Netherlanders prevalence is 20-35% and 27.3%, respectively.

Further, the study reported that the potential risk factors that can lead to the sleep disorders problems include, severe stressful circumstances, anxiety, depression, trauma, urban living, low socioeconomic condition, increasing use of technology, and social media.

Researchers used the seven major health databases and additional sources to identify and elucidate the data on prevalence and its correlation with the sleep disorders and available interventions. The Joanna Briggs Institute Methodology for Scoping Review was used, and the research findings were reported using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for Scoping Reviews (PRISMA-ScR) checklist.

Results revealed that the prevalence of sleeping disorders ranged from 2.3% to 76.6%. and the associated factors include age, sex, literacy, mental and physical health, and Covid-19 related factors.

β€œIt indicates the high burden of sleep disorder with limited interventions that necessitate informing policymakers and practitioners to facilitate future research and implementations,” says the author of the study.

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