1. In this cross-sectional study, it was found that participants had lower overall sleep health following a COVID-19 infection compared to pre-infection sleep levels.
2. Furthermore, COVID-19 symptom severity was found to be a significant predictor of poor overall sleep health.
Evidence Rating Level: 2 (Good)
COVID-19 has infected millions of people around the world and has been known to exhibit short-and long-term effects. Although research has identified numerous neurocognitive sequelae of COVID-19, such as brain fog, and memory impairments, there has been limited research into the impacts of the infection on long-term sleep outcomes. Therefore, the purpose of this cross-sectional study was to investigate the sleep health of an international cohort who had previously tested positive for COVID-19.
The study was conducted between March and June 2021 and consisted of 1001 individuals from 32 countries, ages 18 to 84 years. Participants were included if they had a prior positive viral or antibody COVID-19 test result. Participants completed a self-reported online questionnaire regarding their COVID-19 infection, demographic information, and prior health conditions The Regulatory Satisfaction Alertness Timing Efficiency Duration (RU-STATED) questionnaire was used to assess sleep health both before and after COVID-19 infection. The primary outcome was the difference in current sleep health compared to that prior to COVID-19 diagnosis.
The results showed that participants had lower overall sleep health compared to their recalled sleep health prior to COVID-19 infection. Factors such as sleep satisfaction and daytime alertness were significantly lower post-COVID-19 infection compared to before. Furthermore, the self-reported severity of COVID-19 symptoms was a significant predictor of poor sleep health. The study was limited by the cross-sectional design which may have introduced recall bias when participants were required to provide information on pre-infection sleep health. Nonetheless, the present study demonstrated the potential negative impacts of COVID-19 infection on long-term sleep outcomes.
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