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News

  • Brain chemical could be key to happiness

    Mar 25 2013...
    The neurochemical changes underlying human emotions and social behavior are largely unknown. However, scientists at UCLA have measured the release of a specific peptide, a neurotransmitter called hypocretin, that greatly increased when subjects were happy but decreased when they were sad.

    The finding suggests that boosting hypocretin could elevate both mood and alertness in humans, thus laying the foundation for possible future treatments of psychiatric disorders like depression by targeting measureable abnormalities in brain chemistry. READ MORE>>
  • Adult sleepwalking serious condition that impacts quality of life

    Feb 28 2013...
    A new study found that adult sleepwalking is a potentially serious condition that may induce violent behaviors and affect health-related quality of life.

    “We found a higher frequency of daytime sleepiness, fatigue, insomnia, depressive and anxiety symptoms and altered quality of life in patients with sleepwalking compared to the control group,” said Yves Dauvilliers, MD, PhD, the study’s principal investigator and lead author. Dr. Dauvilliers is professor of physiology and neurology and director of the sleep lab at Gui-de-Chauliac Hospital in Montpellier, France. “What would usually be considered a benign condition, adult sleepwalking is a potentially serious condition and the consequences of sleepwalking episodes should not be ignored.” READ MORE>>
  • Promoting better sleep can improve mental state in hospitals

    Feb 20 2013...
    A hospital is not the best place to get a good night's sleep, especially in a noisy intensive care unit. It's a cause for concern because studies have shown that a lack of sleep can cause patients to experience delirium – an altered mental state that may delay their recovery and lead to short and long-term confusion and memory problems.

    A team of doctors, nurses, psychologists and pharmacists in the medical intensive care unit (MICU) at The Johns Hopkins Hospital implemented a project to see if by taking simple steps to reduce nighttime noise, light, and staff interruptions, as well as stopping certain medications for insomnia, they could reduce delirium and improve patient perceptions about the quality of their sleep. READ MORE>>
  • Suicidal thoughts common in depressed people with sleep issues

    Feb 07 2013...
    A new study found an association between insomnia symptoms and suicidal thoughts in depressed patients.

    “Insomnia and nightmares, which are often confused and may go hand-in-hand, are known risk factors for suicide, but just how they contribute was unknown,” said Dr. W. Vaughn McCall, lead author and chair of the Medical College of Georgia Department of Psychiatry and Health Behavior at Georgia Regents University. READ MORE>>
  • Top three reasons to make better sleep a priority in the New Year

    Dec 28 2012...
    One New Year’s resolution that everyone should keep this year is to make better sleep a priority in the year ahead.

    According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, most adults need about seven to eight hours of sleep each night to feel alert and well rested during the day. Sleeping less than seven hours per night also increases your risk of obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and depression. READ MORE>>
  • Add sleep to your holiday wish list

    Dec 20 2012...
    Between all of the shopping, baking, decorating and other preparations at the holidays, many people may end up sacrificing sleep to get everything done. But the effects of sleep deprivation are greater than most people realize, warns Dr. Timothy I. Morgenthaler, of the Mayo Clinic Sleep Disorders Center and an officer of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine.

    “Not surprisingly traffic accidents are more common in those who are sleep deprived and even if you’re fortunate enough to avoid an accident, sleep deprivation – even over relatively short periods of time – leads to impairment of mood regulation, with an increased tendency toward negative feelings and decreased tendency toward positive feelings. All of these effects of sleep deprivation are likely to affect interactions with family and friends and impair one’s ability to cope with stresses over the holidays,” Morgenthaler said. READ MORE>>