Often, he noted, those with type 2 diabetes are overweight and that excess weight may impair sleep quality. Obesity is linked with sleep apnea, in which the patient often stops breathing during the night and is then awakened, for instance.
The take-home message for those with diabetes is to pay attention to their sleep quality, agreed Zonszein and Knutson. "If no sleep studies have been done, they might want to ask their doctor [about doing some],'" Zonszein said.
Reducing stress, which is easier said than done, should be another goal for those with diabetes and poor sleep, he added. "A lot of people are stressed, and they don't sleep well," Zonszein said.
"Don't wait for your doctor to ask you about sleep," said Knutson. "People with diabetes need to take their sleep seriously and talk to their doctor about it."
To learn more about blood glucose control, visit the American Diabetes Association.
SOURCES: Kristen L. Knutson, Ph.D., assistant professor, medicine, University of Chicago; Joel Zonszein, M.D., director, Clinical Diabetes Center, Montefiore Medical Center, New York City; May 2011, Diabetes Care
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