Sleep Quality and Type 2 Diabetes Management

sleepless woman in bed holding a clockProblems with sleep—defined as poor sleep quality, or experiencing excessive daytime sleepiness—may be associated with poor type 2 diabetes management in some patients, according to the results of a study.

A team led by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh examined the association between both impaired sleep quality and amount of daytime sleepiness on patients’ diabetes control and self-management. The study, “Effect of poor sleep quality and excessive daytime sleepiness on factors associated with diabetes self-management,” was published online ahead of print in November 2012. It appears in The Diabetes Education.

The researchers looked at data on 107 adults living with type 2 diabetes. All of the participants self-reported that they experienced daytime sleepiness. The Epworth Sleepiness Scale was used to measure levels of sleepiness; the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index was used to measure patients’ sleep quality. The following indicators were used to evaluate participants’ sleep: perceived sleep, sleep efficiency, and daily disturbances.

In addition to gathering data on patients’ sleep quality and sleepiness, the researchers relied on the Diabetes Care Profile scales to measure participants’ ability to maintain glycemic control. The researchers also collected psychological and social data to uncover factors that may affect patients’ self-management of their condition.

The results of the study did show an association between sleep quality and diabetes control; poor sleep was linked to poorer type 2 diabetes control. Additionally, poor sleep was associated with a poorer attitude, worse adherence to dietary guidelines, and poorer self-care. The researchers did not find associations between diabetes control and participants’ age, education, and gender. However, people who were married or partnered had fewer glycemic control problems than people who were single.

The researchers conclude that study results demonstrate an association between poor sleep quality and daytime sleepiness with poorer self-management of type 2 diabetes.

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