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Night owls may die early; But sleep disorder is not the main culprit

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People who prefer to go to bed later at night and wake up later in the day (so-called night owls), may be at a higher risk of premature death than others due to the bad habits that result from staying up at night.

to report ScienceAlertAccording to an extensive research that covers 37 years from the beginning to the end, night owls and people who like to stay up late are more likely to die at a younger age than early risers. However, sleeping late is not the main cause of premature death; Rather, according to this research, it is the main reason for smoking and drinking alcohol.

In a recent study, researchers looked at 22,976 Finnish adult twins from 1981 to 2018 in an effort to identify causes of health-related behaviors and diseases. In terms of behavioral habits, 42.9% of these people were known as “sometimes nocturnal” or “nocturnal”. Technically, this tendency to sleep or be active at certain times is called chronotype or time type.

Previous studies have shown that night owls tend to engage in risky behaviors and have higher mortality rates compared to other people. In this study, it appears that early death is not directly due to staying up at night; Rather, it is due to destructive habits that arise after staying awake at night.

Christer HublinThe researcher of the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health says:

The behavioral habits of the participants of this study were collected by completing a questionnaire in 1981, and the researchers followed up the mortality rate of the participants in 2018 by examining the information that was determined through the registration of nationwide questionnaires. Factors such as education, body mass index, sleep habits, and the amount of smoking and drinking of each person were analyzed in the research.

After follow-up, the researchers found that by 2018, 8,727 of the participants had died. The death rate from any cause in people who declared themselves definitely (not somewhat) awake at night was 9% higher than those who were definitely early risers.

However, in the group of non-smoking night owls who did not drink alcohol, the death rate was not increased. The research team found that smoking and drinking alcohol, which lead to alcohol-related diseases and alcohol poisoning, were the main cause of increased mortality.

Being a night owl does not necessarily mean having destructive and unhealthy sleep habits; But these two often go hand in hand. Sleep disorder can lead to many mental and physical problems and is related to nicotine or alcohol addiction. The researchers wrote in the published article:

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