MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: Sleep deprivation can adversely affect health and wellbeing in any patient population.
In pregnancy, adverse outcomes may include preterm birth, longer labor, cesarean birth, and depression.
We found that women with high-risk pregnancies were sleep deprived even prior to hospitalization. Our sample averaged 29 weeks gestation, and half reported getting only between 5 and 6.5 hours of sleep at home before hospital admission. Our sleep hygiene intervention strategies gave them more control over the environment in their hospital room, and they self-reported significantly better sleep than controls. Interestingly, both groups increased their sleep time to almost 7 hours at night, on average, in the hospital before they were discharged home.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: Making sleep a priority during pregnancy is critical for both the mother-to-be and her unborn child. Women need support from family and friends at home to assure that they get at least 7 hours of sleep every day during their pregnancy and during postpartum recovery.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?
Response: This study should be replicated in other hospitals and with other patient populations at risk for poor sleep. Objective measures of sleep time for patients on strict bed rest should be considered if the measures are valid and unobtrusive, such as video recordings or mattress sensors. However, it is the patient’s perception of sleep and awakening during the night that is what ultimately requires intervention.
MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?
Response: No disclosures.
This was a small sample and the study needs to be replicated in other settings with high risk antenatal patients. Our results cannot be generalized to other types of hospitalized adults or children.
MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community.
Kathryn A. Lee, RN, CBSM, PhD; Caryl L. Gay, PhD
Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine Volume: 13 Number: 12
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