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September 2011



Recent Posts




Genetic Mutation Links Inherited Narcolepsy With Multiple Neuropsychiatric Disorders


Article Date: 11 Sep 2011 – 0:00 PDT


Narcolepsy is a rare disorder characterized by an excessive urge to sleep at inappropriate times and places. Narcoleptics are also often subject to “cataplexy,” a sudden muscle weakness that is triggered by strong emotions. Although most cases of narcolepsy are thought to be caused by complex mechanisms, a small percentage of cases are associated with unidentified inherited mutations. Now, a new study published by Cell Press in the American Journal of Human Genetics uncovers a mutation that causes narcolepsy in a large family affected by the disorder. The research sheds new light on the genetics of inherited narcolepsy and provides intriguing insight into other complex neuropsychiatric disorders.


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Insomnia Exhausts US Productivity

By Rick Nauert PhD Senior News Editor
Reviewed by John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on September 2, 2011


Have trouble sleeping at night? If so, you are not alone as new research shows that insomnia is costing the average U.S. worker 11.3 days, or $2,280 in lost productivity every year. That’s $63.2 billion for the nation as a whole; 252.7 days.


“We were shocked by the enormous impact insomnia has on the average person’s life,” said lead author Ronald C. Kessler, Ph.D.


“It’s an underappreciated problem. Americans are not missing work because of insomnia. They are still going to their jobs but accomplishing less because they’re tired. In an information-based economy, it’s difficult to find a condition that has a greater effect on productivity.”


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Is the Circadian Rhythm Less Effective with Age?

Women, sleep, and age

  • 1.  Difficulty falling asleep
  • 2.  Trouble staying asleep
  • 3.  Problems with daytime alertness

In addition to difficulty with nightly sleep, as we age we’re less likely to be able to cope with disruptions to our night-day routines, including difficulty adapting to time-zone changes, or working non-traditional hours, late at night or early in the morning.


Sleep is a critical factor in our long-term health and well being:studies show that it can play an important role in extending health and longevity and lack of sleep, in turn, can pose serious health consequences as we age.


Women face particular challenges to sleep throughout their lives. Research shows they are more likely than men to experience difficulty sleeping. Evidence also suggests that over time, sleeplessness can have a more serious impact on women’s overall health than on men’s. Some of the sleep challenges for women are a matter of physiology, and others can be a matter of the many roles and responsibilities that women so often take on, particularly as mothers.


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