Monday, April 21, 2008" Mental illness and sleep: A two way street

by Julie K. Silver, M.D., Harvard Medical School
April 14, 2008 09:56 AM EDT

I know when I'm feeling anxious about something—be it work or a family matter—I find it hard to fall asleep at night. A friend has mentioned that when she's feeling a lot of stress, she can fall asleep fine but will wake up in the middle of the night and not be able to get to sleep. So it's not surprising that mental health disorders more serious than the standard anxiety that sometimes comes with everyday life can disrupt sleep, too.

Here's what Improving Sleep: A guide to a good night's rest, a Special Health Report from Harvard Medical School, says about this subject:
Almost all people with anxiety disorders have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep. In turn, not being able to sleep may become a focus of some sufferers' ongoing fear and tension, causing further sleep loss.


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