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Sleep Is Critical For Living A Healthy Life

Update Date: Oct 15, 2013 02:53 PM EDT

Getting some shut-eye every night for seven to nine hours is critical to maintaining one's health. Seeking treatment for a sleep disorder is just as critical too, according to three new studies.

"30 percent of adults in the U.S. regularly get insufficient sleep," said the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.

In one study, 2,240 adults were examined to find the relationship between obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and mortality in Asians.

"OSA is a serious sleep illness that is associated with an increased risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, depression and stroke," according to the AASM. "The AASM reports that at least 12 to 18 million adults in the U.S. have untreated obstructive sleep apnea, which involves the repetitive collapse of the upper airway during sleep."

Results for the first study showed that other than increasing your risk of health complications, people with severe OSA have a cardiovascular mortality risk that is 4 times higher than peoples all-cause mortality risk which was 2.5 times higher.

A second study of 2,673 patients in Australia established that untreated OSA is linked to an increase of risk for sleepy motor vehicle drivers. According to the study, reports showed that participants with untreated OSA were three times more likely to be involved in a car crash than anyone else without a sleep disorder.   

The third study observed the association between self-assessed health and sleep duration in Korean adults. 

"Results show that short sleep duration of 5 hours or less per day and long sleep duration of 9 hours or more per day was associated with poor self-rated health," said AASM. "The results add weight to recent data emphasizing the importance of adequate sleep in physical and mental health."

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine encourages people who believe they have OSA or a sleep problem to seek help from an AASM accredited sleep disorder center.

The findings of Mortality of Patients with Obstructive Sleep Apnea in Korea, Excessive Daytime Sleepiness Increases the Risk of Motor Vehicle Crash in Obstructive Sleep Apnea and The Association between Sleep Duration and Self-Rated Health in the Korean General Population are published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine

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