For more information about light therapy, see the multilingual nonprofit Web site www.cet.org. where questionnaires arc available for downloading, and join the discussion forum at: www.chronotherapeutics.org.
Sleep is vital for normal health and well-being. Without sufficient sleep, adults often experience functional decrements that may lead to accidents,1 increased risks for physical2,4 and mental illness,3,5,6 decreased cognitive PF-562271 purchase performance4,7 (especially with aging8), and increased mortality.9 A recent Centers for Disease Control (CDC) analysis of 2006 data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) also determined that women are at higher risk of sleep
disturbance (12.4%) Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical than males (9.9%)10 and therefore, understanding the factors that impact sleep in women is an important focus for clinical research.11 Women report more sleep disturbance than men, but objective measures show
less sleep disturbance.12,13 Measured objectively Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical by polysomnography (PSG), sleep shows changes in architecture and distribution of sleep stages across the lifespan. For example, a meta-analysis by Ohayon et al14 showed that important sleep measures such as total sleep time (TST), sleep efficiency (SE), percentage of slow- wave sleep (SWS), percentage of REM sleep, and REM latency significantly decreased with advancing age in adults. Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical Conversely, measures of sleep typically associated with less restful sleep (sleep latency [SL], Stage 1% and Stage 2% sleep, and wake after sleep onset [WASO] times) significantly increased with age. Furthermore, Ohayon et al found differences in quantitative sleep measures related to gender.
Generally speaking, both sexes showed similar effects of aging on most sleep variables; Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical however, larger effect sizes were observed in women for TST, SE, Stage 1 percentage, and REM latency, suggesting Inhibitors,research,lifescience,medical that aging had a greater impact on these variables in women than men. As well, women appeared to have longer TST and SL, lower Stage 2 percentage sleep, and greater percentage of SWS than agematched men. to In addition to age-related changes, women also experience gender-specific physiological changes that potentially disrupt their sleep. Changes during the menstrual cycle,15 pregnancy,16 in the postpartum period,17 and at menopause18 are associated with alterations in qualitative and quantitative sleep measures. Women are also more predisposed to develop depressed mood,19 especially during these periods of hormonal change20 which may further compromise their nighttime sleep. Nevertheless, while subjective reports of sleep disturbances in association with disturbed mood, aging, and altered reproductive status (RS) are widely reported, carefully controlled studies of objectively measured sleep alterations associated with alterations in mood and RS are uncommon (see review in ref 21).