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Epidemiology of Insomnia: from Adolescence to Old Age

      The epidemiologic study of insomnia, that is, examination of the patterns by which insomnia occurs in human populations and the time, place, and individual factors that influence those patterns [
      • Lilienfeld A.M.
      • Lilienfeld D.E.
      Laying the foundations: the epidemiologic approach to disease.
      ] remains an underdeveloped area of sleep research [
      • Ohayon M.M.
      Epidemiology of insomnia: what we know and what we still need to learn.
      ,

      National Institutes of Health State-of-the-Science Conference Statement on Manifestations and Management of Chronic Insomnia in Adults. NIH Consens Sci Statements 2005;22(2):1–30. Available at: http://consensus.nih.gov/2005/2005InsomniaSOS026PDF.pdf. Accessed April 27, 2006.

      ]. From the earliest studies [
      • Bixler E.O.
      • Kales A.
      • Soldatos C.R.
      Prevalence of sleep disorders in the Los Angeles metropolitan area.
      ,
      • Mellinger G.D.
      • Blater M.B.
      • Uhlenhuth E.H.
      Insomnia and its treatment: prevalence and correlates.
      ,
      • Ford D.E.
      • Kamerow D.B.
      Epidemiologic study of sleep disturbances and psychiatric disorders: an opportunity for prevention?.
      ] to the more recent [
      • Ohayon M.M.
      Prevalence of DSM-IV diagnostic criteria of insomnia: distinguishing insomnia related to mental disorders from sleep disorders.
      ,

      Ohayon MM. Prevalence, diagnosis and treatment of chronic insomnia in the general population. In: Proceedings of the satellite symposium new developments in the treatment of insomnia—do they really have impact on the primary care settings? Zeist (The Netherlands): Medical Forum International; 2001.

      ,
      • Soldatos C.R.
      • Allaert F.A.
      • Ohta T.
      • et al.
      How do individuals sleep around the world? Results from a single-day survey in ten countries.
      ,
      • Morin C.M.
      • Leblanc M.
      • Daley M.
      • et al.
      Epidemiology of insomnia: prevalence, self-help treatments, consultations, and determinants of help-seeking behaviors.
      ], a general consensus has developed that approximately 30% of the adult population across a number of countries report one or more current symptoms of insomnia: difficulty initiating sleep (DIS), difficulty maintaining sleep (DMS), waking up too early (EMA), and in some cases nonrestorative or poor-quality sleep (NRS) [
      • Ohayon M.M.
      Epidemiology of insomnia: what we know and what we still need to learn.
      ,
      • Roth T.
      • Drake C.
      Evolution of insomnia: current status and future direction.
      ,
      • Roth T.
      Prevalence, associated risks, and treatment patterns of insomnia.
      ]. With the addition to the case definition of perceived daytime impairment of function caused by the insomnia symptoms, approximately 10% of adults seem to be currently affected [
      • Ohayon M.M.
      Epidemiology of insomnia: what we know and what we still need to learn.
      ,
      • Roth T.
      • Drake C.
      Evolution of insomnia: current status and future direction.
      ,
      • Roth T.
      Prevalence, associated risks, and treatment patterns of insomnia.
      ]. The application of more formal diagnostic criteria such as the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, fourth edition (DSM-IV), which make the additional requirements that the symptoms of insomnia persist for at least 1 month and do not occur exclusively in the presence of another sleep disorder or mental disorder or as the direct physiologic effects of a substance use or medical condition, yield current prevalence estimates of approximately 6% [
      • Ohayon M.M.
      Prevalence of DSM-IV diagnostic criteria of insomnia: distinguishing insomnia related to mental disorders from sleep disorders.
      ,

      Ohayon MM. Prevalence, diagnosis and treatment of chronic insomnia in the general population. In: Proceedings of the satellite symposium new developments in the treatment of insomnia—do they really have impact on the primary care settings? Zeist (The Netherlands): Medical Forum International; 2001.

      ,
      • Ohayon M.M.
      • Caulet M.
      • Guilleminault C.
      Complaints about nocturnal sleep: how a general population perceives its sleep, and how this relates to the complaint of insomnia.
      ,
      • Ohayon M.M.
      • Hong S.C.
      Prevalence of insomnia and associated factors in South Korea.
      ,
      • Ohayon M.M.
      • Paiva T.
      Global sleep dissatisfaction for the assessment of insomnia severity in the general population of Portugal.
      ].
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