Covid-19: be careful with the consumption of sleeping pills

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A study by researchers at the University of Ottawa reports that 50% of respondents have suffered from insomnia since the start of the Covid-19 epidemic.

Insomnia, difficulty sleeping, anxiety, the global epidemic of Covid-19 weighs on the sleep of people around the world. In Canada, a study conducted by researchers at the University of Ottawa reveals that 50% of those surveyed have suffered from insomnia and anxiety disorders since the start of this pandemic. A health problem confirmed by several studies, research published in the Journal of Sleep Research also reports a sharp increase in the consumption of sleeping pills in the last year.

In fact, researchers at the University of Ottawa surveyed 5,525 Canadians. This investigation was carried out during the first wave of the Covid-19 epidemic. Thus, they noted that the epidemic had caused sleep disturbances in half the panel. "We have identified three types of profiles: those who sleep more, those whose sleep schedule has been delayed and those who sleep less than before the pandemic," summarized Rébecca Robillard, researcher, assistant professor and co-director of the Facultys Laboratoire du sleep of Psychology from the University of Ottawa and lead author of this study.

Changes in sleep that are not without consequences for mental health, in particular, increased stress and depression.

The researcher points out that some people are more vulnerable to sleep disorders: "They seem to disproportionately affect women, people with family and care responsibilities. These disorders have also impacted people with earlier waking hours, higher levels of stress, higher alcohol consumption and television exposure. " Disorders that also affect employees and patients with chronic diseases.

So, to keep sleeping pills as low as possible, the researcher recommends getting up at the same time each morning and doing relaxing rituals before going to sleep. Also, for a good quality of sleep, it is also recommended to avoid caffeine and alcohol before going to bed. The use of tranquilizers and sleeping pills has increased. An evolution that "probably reflects the important psychological impact of the Covid-19 epidemic and its social, professional and economic consequences," the ANSM and CNAM pointed out in their fifth part of the Epi-Phare study on the evolution of drug use since the start of the Covid-19 epidemic.

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