December 10, 2008

Many Georgians have trouble staying awake

Sixteen percent of Georgia's residents have trouble staying awake during the day, U.S. heath officials said.

A study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta and published online in the American Journal of Epidemiology points to the importance of diagnosing and treating sleep problems before they could potentially develop into long-term health issues.

The study also found that in addition to problems staying awake:

-- 35 percent of Georgians wake up feeling unrefreshed.

-- 33 percent report that they snore.

-- 31 percent cannot sleep through the night.

-- 25 percent complain that they have problems falling asleep.

However, only 10 percent of the people in the study reported having been diagnosed with a sleep disorder, study author Michael Decker of CDC's Chronic Viral Diseases Branch said.

The researchers analyzed 2005 data from the Georgia Study of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, in which 6,530 randomly selected adults were interviewed. The prevalence of daytime sleepiness and sleep-related complaints were similar among metropolitan, urban and rural Georgians.

Because the study reflects Georgians in urban and rural areas, there is a probability that the findings can be generalized to the rest of the United States, but further studies would be needed to confirm this, Decker said