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Sleep disorders as primary and secondary factors in relation with daily functioning in medical students

Deldar Morad Abdulah, Rasoul Sabri Piro

From the Adult Nursing Department, College of Nursing, University of Duhok, Duhok, Iraq 

How to cite this article:

Abdulah DM, Piro RS. Sleep disorders as primary and secondary factors in relation with daily functioning in medical students. Ann Saudi Med 2018; 38(1): 537-544.

DOI: 10.5144/0256-4947.2018.537


BACKGROUND: College students experience various types of sleep disorders that impact daily functioning. Previous studies have focused on the effect of one sleep disorder.


OBJECTIVE: Examine factors that might relate to several sleep disorders and the impacts of sleep disorders on the daily functioning in medical students.


DESIGN: Cross-sectional study.


SETTING: Medical college.


SUBJECTS AND METHODS: A random sample of medical students from a public university was invited to participate in a cross-sectional study using the structured SLEEP-50 self-reported questionnaire. The sleep disorders covered by the questionnaire were insomnia, sleep apnea, restless legs syndrome, sleep walking, circadian rhythm sleep disorder, nightmares, narcolepsy, and factors impacting sleep, effects of sleep complaints on daily functioning, and sleeping duration.


MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE: Sleep duration, sleep disorders.


RESULTS: Of 317 participants, 165 (50.2%) reported having less than 7 hours sleep and apart from hyper-somnia, had various kinds of sleep disorders. Various factors such as having no pleasure and entertainment, feeling sadness, alcohol drinking, amount of sleeping hours, smoking, age, a noisy or light bedroom, and substance abuse were related to different sleep disorders. Moreover, students with sleep disorders felt tired arising, felt sleepy during the day, were easily irritated, had difficulty in concentration, had concerns about amount of sleep, and slept badly at college.


CONCLUSIONS: Insufficient sleep is a common issue in medical students and a number of sleep disorders were found. The results suggest that sleep disorders could have negative impacts on the daily functioning of students.


LIMITATIONS: The study findings may not be generalizable because sociocultural characteristics of the sample may differ from the general population. 



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