Perceptions of racism may cause loss of sleep and perhaps loss of sleep may also impact perceptions of racism.
A new study has found that
self-reported sleep disturbance correlated to perceived racism, which was increased by 61 percent after adjusting for socioeconomic factors and symptoms of depression. A similar relationship between perceived racism and daytime fatigue was no longer significant after additional adjustment for depressive symptoms.
The study involved an analysis of data from the 2006 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, which is administered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The world's largest, ongoing telephone health survey, it is an annual, state-based, random-digit-dialed survey of American adults. Researchers analyzed responses from 7,093 people in Michigan and Wisconsin, which were the only states to collect data on both sleep and racism.
Perceived racism was assessed with the question: "Within the past 12 months when seeking health care, do you feel your experiences were worse than, the same as, or better than for people of other races?" Responses were dichotomized as either "worse" or "same or better." Respondents were classified as having sleep disturbance if they reported having difficulty sleeping at least six nights in the past two weeks.
"This study found that an environmental stressor that exists purely at the social level - perceived racial discrimination - had a hand in how likely a person was to experience disturbed sleep," said lead author Michael A. Grandner, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow at the Center for Sleep and Circadian Neurobiology at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Pa. "The most surprising finding in this study was that individuals who perceived racial discrimination were more likely to experience sleep difficulties, and it did not matter if they were Black or White, men or women, rich or poor, or even if they were otherwise depressed or not, since these were adjusted for in the statistical analysis.
Grandner noted that people who experience racial discrimination are more likely to have poor mental and physical health. The results suggest that sleep may be an important pathway linking discrimination with health problems.
"Sleep is essential for health, and many processes in our body depend on sleep to function properly," he said. "Disturbed sleep may be a factor that contributes to heart disease, diabetes, weight gain, depression, cancer, auto accidents, poor performance, and many other important outcomes. And even though sleep is a biological process, it can be affected by social environments."
The research was presented today at SLEEP 2011, the 25th Anniversary Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies.
- PHYSICAL SCIENCES
- EARTH SCIENCES
- LIFE SCIENCES
- SOCIAL SCIENCES
Subscribe to the newsletter
Stay in touch with the scientific world!
Know Science And Want To Write?
- Part I: Bee Deaths Mystery Solved? Neonicotinoids (Neonics) May Actually Help Bee Health
- Eosinophilic Esophagitis: Genetic Clues Of Severe Food Allergy
- Is Religion A Consolation Worth Having?
- 3X Saturated Fat In The Diet Doesn't Increase It In Blood
- Interstellar Is A Dangerous Fantasy Of US Colonialism
- Extraordinary Claims: Review My Paper For $10
- Why Computer Programs Can't Understand Truth - And Ethics Of Artificial Intelligence Babies
- "If one is a fan of the FireFly franchise they could take this movie as a sort of rip off of the..."
- "Ha! Like I said, Democrats are a lot better about PR than Republican groups are. Corporations have..."
- "From your response, you seem totally incapable of addressing anything I wrote.Experience has taught..."
- "It is a fact that throughout history much evil has been done for the sake of the believers' godsAnd..."
- "You seem to believe that reality depends or one's viewpoint rather than vice versa.Nope.  ..."
- Modified DNA backbone enables success of existing and novel oligonucleotide therapeutics
- Gene in kidney may play role in high blood pressure
- Panel-based genetic diagnostic testing for inherited eye disease proves highly accurate
- Research finds tooth enamel fast-track in humans
- Good news for cocaine users: Caffeine counters cocaine's effects on women's estrus cycles