A survey by pharmaceutical company Eisai Inc explored the impact of insomnia or sleeping difficulties on individual performance, interpersonal relationships, and psychosocial behavior. Data from the “How America Sleeps and Wakes” survey was presented at the 2019 World Sleep Congress in Vancouver, Canada. The data show that next-day functioning is of high importance to people with insomnia or sleeping difficulties, yet most do not wake ready.
The survey found that:
- 90% of patients agreed “having a good night’s sleep” means “having a good day” the next morning.
- When they wake up the next day after not having a good night’s sleep, 67% of patients reported feeling tired or fatigued, and only 7% reported feeling “ready to start their day.”
- Approximately two-thirds of patients rated “waking up refreshed and ready to start the day” and “being able to function normally throughout the day” as “very important” in managing their insomnia or sleeping difficulties (63% and 64%, respectively).
- Approximately 93% of patients who experienced sleepiness or grogginess in the morning reported having these difficulties at least two to three times per week, and 95% rated them as “very or somewhat bothersome.”
The survey was conducted online by The Harris Poll, on behalf of Eisai Inc., between February 14 and March 8, 2019, among 525 US adults ages 18+ who have been diagnosed by a healthcare professional with insomnia, or have experienced difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep for three or more nights each week over a period of three months or more, and 505 US adults ages 18+ who were not diagnosed with insomnia and did not experience sleeping difficulties, but who resided with an adult relative diagnosed by a healthcare professional with insomnia, or who has experienced difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep for three or more nights each week over a period of three months or more.
“These findings demonstrate people with insomnia or sleeping difficulties view these conditions as more than just challenges of falling and staying asleep. Waking ready and next-day function are of prime importance,” says David Sheehan, MD, MBA, DLFAPA, distinguished University Health Professor Emeritus, University of South Florida College of Medicine and a “How America Sleeps and Wakes” survey advisor, in a release. “As healthcare professionals, we should consider next-day function as we treat patients. Our goal should be to help patients both sleep well and wake ready.”
The survey also demonstrated household cohabitants are negatively impacted in unexpected ways.
- More than 8 in 10 cohabitants (85%) agreed that they themselves are more likely to have a good day when the person with insomnia or sleeping difficulties in the home has a good night’s sleep.
- Over half of cohabitants (53%) whose relatives experienced morning sleepiness or grogginess rated these difficulties as very or somewhat bothersome for themselves.
- When their partner or relative does not have a good night’s sleep, a quarter of cohabitants (26%) reported feeling tired or fatigued themselves.
“We know insomnia or sleeping difficulties can negatively impact the entire household, not just the person who is struggling with sleep,” says Phyllis C. Zee, MD, PhD, Chief of Sleep Medicine, Department of Neurology, Northwestern University, and a “How America Sleeps and Wakes” survey advisor. “The important finding of this survey was the vast majority of cohabitants revealed that they are more likely to have a good day if the person with whom they are living has a good night’s sleep.”
When it comes to insomnia treatment, a majority of patients (70%) and cohabitants (81%) agreed it wasn’t enough for an insomnia medication to help the patient sleep—it should also help them function the next day. Additionally, both survey populations reported similar top treatment goals:
- Wake up feeling rested and refreshed the next morning (59% patients, 55% cohabitants).
- Function better throughout the day (44% patients, 38% cohabitants).
- Wake up ready to enjoy life each day (48% patients, 33% cohabitants).
“The survey findings presented at the World Sleep Congress underscore the need for new treatment options that help patients improve next-day functioning,” says Margaret Moline, PhD, executive director and international project team lead, Eisai. “Our efforts to uncover valuable insights on the clinical and broader lifestyle implications for people experiencing insomnia or sleep challenges underscore Eisai’s commitment to developing new therapies for patients that may help them wake ready to take on the day.”