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Sleeping Pills are Linked to Increased Mortality Risk and Shorter Life Expectancy



A nationwide study of nearly 500,000 adults in Taiwan found a link between taking sleeping pills and a higher mortality rate and shorter life expectancy, particularly in people who sleep heavily. Examiners presumed that methodologies to raise public and clinician awareness of the potential damages are required, taking into account the rising trends in long-term hypnotic/sedative prescriptions around the world.

The study highlighted 484,916 community-dwelling adults in Taiwan who were categorized by daily sleep duration into 4 groups: extremely short (<4 h), short (4-6 h), medium (6-8 h), and long (>8 h). Sleeping pill users had the lowest mortality risk when they slept six to eight hours per night. Even when they got the recommended amount of sleep, people who took sleeping pills had a 55% (95% CI, 1.38-1.73; P <.001) higher mortality risk than nonusers.

“The mechanisms underling the association between sleeping pill use and causes of death are likely to be multifactorial, including potentially lethal morbidities such as cancer, infection, depression, suicide, falling, fracture, automobile accidents, suppressed respiration, and dementia,” lead investigator Yu Sun, MD, PhD, Institute of Preventive Medicine, National Taiwan University, and colleagues, wrote. To the authors’ knowledge, this was the first study to investigate the joint effects of sleep duration and sleep quality with sleeping pill use.

Over a median follow-up period of 10 years, 16,927 (3.5%) deaths happened, with cancer (39.1%), cardiovascular diseases (19.6%), and respiratory diseases (7.1%) as the leading causes. Contrasted and sleeping pill nonusers with medium sleep time, the reference group, the HRs for sleeping pill clients were 1.37 (95% CI, 1.19-1.59), 1.55 (95% CI, 1.38-1.73), and 2.23 (95% CI, 1.89-2.26) in groups with short, medium, and long sleep durations, respectively. After adjusting for the aforementioned confounders, the HR of sleeping pills on mortality for extremely short sleepers was 1.33, but it was not significant.

Mental meds were taken by a little piece (n = 2858; 0.5 percent) of study participants. In the wake of changing mental medicine use, sleeping pill users had 10%, 11%, and 31% higher risk of all-cause mortality in those with medium, short, and extremely short sleep durations, respectively. Long sleepers did have a 96% (95% CI, 1.52-2.54) higher mortality risk than the reference group, but these findings were not statistically significant. Of note, awareness examinations barring these patients kept on showing huge expansion in the risk of mortality in extremely short and long sleepers.

The risk of death was lowest in patients who reported frequently dreaming while they were asleep, while the risk of death was highest in patients who reported difficulty falling asleep. Mortality chances were higher in resting pill clients who announced no rest issues than in nonusers who detailed rest quality issues, after change for the previously mentioned segment attributes, way of life variables, and comorbidities. These outcomes were predictable generally speaking and for nonusers in the wake of adapting to mental medicine use.

By and large, sleeping pill users had 5.3 years and 5.7 years shorter life expectancy among men and women, respectively. Among men, at age 50, sleeping pill users with extreme sleep duration had 3.9 years (<4 h) and 5.4 years (>8 h) shorter life expectancy. For male extreme sleepers at age 30, taking sleeping pills was related with around 9 years decrease in life expectancy, bringing about a decrease of future by up to 12.6 years contrasted and sleeping pill nonusers with 6-8 hours of sleep.

When compared to medium-sleepers who did not take sleeping pills at the same age, users of sleeping pills with long sleep times (>8 h) had significantly shorter life expectancy among women. Barely any ladies who used sleeping pills had sleep durations of under 4 hours at age 40 (n = 0), 50 years (n = 1), 60 years (n = 6), or 70 years (n = 5) of age, so the results in these groups probably won’t be significant, the study authors noted.

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