Hillman D, Lack, L. Public Health Implications of Sleep Loss: the Community Burden, MJA Oct 13

Public health implications of sleep loss: the community burden, Medical Journal of Australia, October 2013

David R Hillman, MB BS, FANZCA, FRCPE, Leon C Lack, PhD

“Sleep is a basic and necessary biological process that demands to be satisfied as much as our need for food and drink. Inadequate sleep can occur if insufficient time is allowed for it or if a disorder is present that disturbs sleep quality. It is only recently that we have begun to understand the scale of the health and social consequences of insufficient sleep and sleep disorders. Sleep loss from these problems is associated with disturbances in cognitive and psychomotor function including mood, thinking, concentration, memory, learning, vigilance, and reaction times. These disturbances have adverse effects on wellbeing, productivity and safety. Insufficient sleep is a direct contributor to injury and death from motor vehicle and workplace accidents. Further, relationships have been demonstrated between shortened sleep and a range of health problems including hypertension, type 2 diabetes, obestiy, cardiovascular disease and total mortality risk. Specific sleep disorders such as insomnia, obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) and restless leg syndrome have also been associated with increased morbidity and mortality. These sleep-related problems incur financial costs relating to health and other expenditures and non-financial costs relating to loss of quality of life. This article considers the prevalence and economic impacts of sleep problems in Australia.”

Download the article →