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Shëndeti

Heart attack, latest study raises alarm: Risk more than doubles for those with sleep disorders

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People who sometimes sleep too much and sometimes too little, and those who go to bed at very different times, face a greater cardiovascular risk. The more irregular their sleep duration, the greater the risk of cardiovascular disease due to disruption of the biological clock that affects metabolism, blood pressure and heart rate, according to a new American scientific study.

The researchers, led by professor of sleep epidemiology Tianyi Huang of Harvard Medical School and Brigham & Women's Hospital in Boston, who made the corresponding publication in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, studied about 2,000 people aged 45-84 over five years. Participants did not have cardiovascular disease at the start of the study and were asked to wear a special sleep tracking device on their wrist. During the study, 111 people had a heart attack, stroke or other cardiovascular event.

It found that those who had irregular sleep (at least a two-hour difference in sleep duration each night) were more than twice as likely to have a cardiovascular problem. Those who had the most regular sleep schedule (deviation of up to one hour from night to night) were less at risk. The same difference in risk existed for the difference in sleep time: Those who varied by at least 90 minutes from night to night were at greater risk than those who varied by no more than 30 minutes.

"Usually when we talk about sleep, we tend to focus on its duration, how many hours a person sleeps at night, and not on how irregular their sleep is, what irregular hours they go to bed and how varied the duration is of sleep from one night to another. The study shows that healthy sleep is not only adequate sleep, but also sleep that is not irregular," said Dr Huang.