According to new studies being stressed may prevent a person from getting a good and relaxed sleep. The exact reason for this is still not known but a new study offers some potential clues. In this study researchers observed that stress tends to alter the normal sleep cycle and brings about changes similar to those occurring in people suffering from insomnia (loss of sleep).
The study was conducted on 59 adults and the participants were divided into 2 groups. The first group (control group) was asked to read a popular magazine and was told that they would be awakened in the morning. The second group was given a stressful situation and were told that they will have to give an oral presentation when they get up in the morning. Also that after getting a topic for presentation they would be given 2 minutes for preparation after which they will have to give a 15 minutes oral presentation that will be recorded for evaluation.
During the study while the participants slept, their heart rate and blood pressure was monitored. The researchers observed that in comparison to the control group, people in the second group (who were exposed to stressful situation) woke up frequently, were less relaxed and had few phases of deep sleep. Overall they had a restless sleep.
The study also showed stress-related changes in heart rate variations between the two groups. According to researchers the above study shows that acute stress induced changes in the sleep cycle, hence resulting in poor quality and maintenance of sleep.
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