Relation between quality and quantity of sleep and psychological distress among hospitalized patients
Background: Sleep is a fundamental component of good health, however its promotion in acute hospital settings does not appear to be a priority. Causes of sleep disruption are varied and include environmental and bio-cognitive factors, including pain, bright light, noise, anxiety and stress. The environmental and bio-cognitive consequences of sleep deprivation on the health and recovery of hospital inpatients are various. Inadequate sleep can lead to both psychological and physiological consequences. Objective: This observational study was aimed at determining the pattern, quantity and quality of sleep and the prevalence, causes and effect of sleep deprivation / disturbance among patients hospitalized at the elective wards of a tertiary care hospital. Methods: This observational study was conducted from August 2015 to January 2016, upon a sample of 50 patients admitted to Liaquat University Hospital (who had spent at least 4 weeks at the hospital). The sample of patients (chosen via simple random sampling), were interviewed consecutively every morning for 4 days and their mean response was evaluated to account for irregularities in experience. Data was collected using interview based structured questionnaire which included the 42 point DAS scale approved by Australian Center for Posttraumatic Mental Health. The data was analyzed in SPSS v. 17.0 and MS Excel 2013. Results: During the stay at the hospital, DAS score of depression, anxiety and stress all rose. The most reported bothersome elements that disturbed sleep included, pain (30%), Noise (6%), and feeling of unease, irritation and panic (6%). Majority of the sample comprised of female (56%) respondents coming from rural areas (74%) with a low socioeconomic background (86%). The quantity of sleep dwindled between (but not more than) 5 to 6 hours. The quality too (self-rated by the respondents did not rise above a value of 6.5. Conclusion: The conclusion is in line with our hypothesis. With the hustle and bustle happening at all hours in a hospital, patients have trouble getting adequate sleep, which has an evident the quality and quantity of sleep during their stay. Owing to the belief that sleep-deprived patients are less likely to be fully active participants in their care. It is recommended that steps should be taken to deal with this problem on a priority basis.
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