Teens who have a hard time sleeping through the night may also have a higher risk of developing heart disease later on, a new Canadian Medical Association Journal study suggests.
Researchers at The Hospital for Sick Children in Canada found that sleep disturbances were linked with higher cholesterol levels, blood pressure levels and body mass index in teens -- all factors that can raise the risk of heart disease later on.
"These findings are important, given that sleep disturbance is highly prevalent in adolescence and that cardiovascular disease risk factors track from childhood into adulthood," study researcher Dr. Indra Narang, director of sleep medicine at The Hospital for Sick Children, said in a statement.
Narang and her colleagues examined the sleep of 4,104 teens who were part of the Health Heart Schools' Program in Ontario. On average, the teens slept 7.9 hours on schoolnights and 9.4 hours on the weekends, they found.
However, poor sleep during weeknights was reported by nearly 20 percent of the students in the study, and poor sleep during the weekends was reported by 10 percent.
Not only did researchers find that sleep quality was linked with increased blood pressure, cholesterol and BMI in the teens, but they also found that sleep quality was linked with eating junk food and leading a sedentary lifestyle.
Teens who didn't get a lot of sleep each night were also more likely to have a higher BMI than teens who got a lot of sleep each night, but sleep duration did not seem to have a connection with blood pressure or cholesterol, researchers found.
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The Oscar-winning actor told <em>The Hollywood Reporter</em> that he has <a href="http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/george-clooney-oscars-brad-pitt-stacy-keibler-descendants-290691" target="_hplink">trouble falling asleep without the TV on</a>. "I'm able to numb out," he said about the blue glow. While many claim falling asleep to the TV helps them nod off, it can actually disrupt the sleep cycle. Your brain will still <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/14/sleep-compatibility-_n_1274860.html" target="_hplink">listen in on subtle changes in volume</a>, even if you're asleep, Phillip Gehrman, Ph.D., CBSM, clinical director of the Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program at the University of Pennsylvania told The Huffington Post. That could account for Clooney's trouble <em>staying</em> asleep. "Without question, I wake every night five times," he said.
Amid swirling rumors of a reunion with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown, the "We Found Love" singer has taken to Twitter on multiple occasions, sending messages that she's having trouble sleeping. In January, <a href="http://www.capitalfm.com/artists/rihanna/news/chris-brown-sleep/" target="_hplink">after completing a world tour</a> in 2011, she tweeted <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/rihanna/status/154801966898364417" target="_hplink">"Suddenly all the silence is being drowned by my thoughts! No sleep"</a> and in February started adding <a href="https://twitter.com/#!/rihanna/status/171119260427485184" target="_hplink">#GOtoSLEEPRobyn</a> to some of her tweets. Surfing the web, checking email or tweeting too close to bedtime, however, can send signals to your brain that <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/gretchen-rubin/bedtime-tips_b_1280228.html" target="_hplink">disrupt the natural bedtime process</a> and make it harder to drift off.
There's no denying the pop star is, at the very least, extremely passionate about what she does. But all that drive has her tossing and turning at night, she told the UK's <em>OK! Magazine</em> in 2010. "My passion is so strong I can't sleep -- I <a href="http://www.ok.co.uk/celebnews/view/20373/Lady-Gaga-I-haven-t-slept-in-three-days/" target="_hplink">haven't slept for three days</a>," she said. "I lie in bed and try to pray and breathe. I have a very overactive mind. " Whether or not she really meant she'd been awake for a solid 72 hours or simply didn't sleep <em>well</em> three nights in a row, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/21/sleep-deprivation_n_1290067.html" target="_hplink">sleep deprivation</a> has real consequences. Among the most frightening is a <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/17/sleep-deprivation-dangers_n_878743.html" target="_hplink">decrease in reaction time</a>, which, if you're driving, could prove deadly.
The basketball giant sat down with Dr. Charles Czeisler, director of the division of sleep medicine at Harvard Medical School, who approached him to be a part of a sleep study. O'Neal's girlfriend had been insisting he get <a href="http://healthysleep.med.harvard.edu/sleep-apnea" target="_hplink">tested for sleep apnea</a>, after noticing him snoring and then seemingly stop breathing during the night, she said. Sleep apnea, which occurs when someone temporarily stops breathing during sleep, is more common in people who are overweight and/or have thick necks. At 7'1" and an <a href="http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/health/blog/dailydose/2011/05/shaq_discusses.html" target="_hplink">estimated 325 pounds</a>, Shaq certainly fits the bill, points out Boston.com. Sleep apnea is often treated with a ventilation therapy known as <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/10/sleep-apnea-disorder-tips_n_1196851.html" target="_hplink">CPAP</a> (continuous positive airway pressure) that requires the snorer to sleep with a Darth Vader-esque mask. Shaq said he planned to wear his every night -- and joked he might wear it out on the town, too.
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The New York Knicks
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