Healthcare - On the agenda - Sleeping disorders widespread in UK

In a nutshell

A report by the Mental Health Foundation, featuring data from the largest survey of sleep patterns undertaken in the UK, has revealed that more than 60 per cent of the population suffers from insomnia or other sleeping disorders. The charity described lack of sleep in the UK as 'a seriously neglected public health concern'.

- What is in the report?

Of the 5,328 people involved in the Great British Sleep Survey, 37 per cent had some form of insomnia and 24 per cent had other sleep-related problems such as teeth-grinding, sleeping excessively, or sleep apnoea, where the airway is obstructed and people can struggle to breathe. Reviewing the survey, the Mental Health Foundation published Sleep Matters, a report that detailed how sleep disorders put sufferers at a significantly greater risk of health problems, ranging from depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder to immune deficiency and heart disease. The report also revealed the extent to which sleep disorders such as insomnia affect everyday issues including relationships and work.

- PR strategy

The Mental Health Foundation handled the media outreach in-house. An embargoed press release highlighting the key findings in the report was sent out to the national media.

- Media coverage

The story was covered extensively in the UK and international media. Press highlights on 27 January included The Daily Telegraph, the Daily Mail and the Daily Mirror all running stories on page seven of their editions. 5,328 - Number of people who were surveyed

37% of those surveyed had some form of insomnia

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