Lonely teens sleep less: Study
Washington D.C. [USA], May 17 : Does your teenage daughter or son sleep less or faces trouble while sleeping at night? It may be due to the feeling of loneliness, reveals a study.King's College London in London also found that loneliness and poor sleep quality was almost 70 percent stronger among those exposed to the most severe forms of violence.
The findings also revealed that lonely people were 24 percent more likely to feel tired and have difficulty concentrating during the day.
Loneliness is defined by researchers as a distressing feeling that people experience when they perceive their social relationships to be inadequate.
The team analysed 2,232 twins, aged 18-19 in England and Wales.
They measured loneliness by scoring responses to four questions: 'How often do you feel that you lack companionship?', 'How often do you feel left out?', 'How often do you feel isolated from others?' and 'How often do you feel alone?'
One of the proposed reasons for restless sleep in lonely individuals is the possibility that they feel less safe, so the researchers examined the impact of past exposure to violence, including crime, sexual abuse, child maltreatment and violent abuse by family members or peers.
The researchers also measured sleep quality in the past month, including the time it takes to fall asleep, sleep duration and sleep disturbances, as well as daytime dysfunction such as staying awake during the day.
The results suggested that about 25-30 percent of the sample reported feeling lonely sometimes, with a further five percent reporting frequent feelings of loneliness.
They found that the association between loneliness and sleep quality remained even after they accounted for symptoms of mental health problems such as depression and anxiety, which are commonly associated with sleep problems and feeling lonely.
The study published in Psychological Medicine journal.