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Social inequalities in the emergence and persistence of sleeping problems in European older adults

Vera van de Straat (UGent) and Piet Bracke (UGent)
Author
Organization
Abstract
Introduction: Although we spend one third of our lives asleep, sociological research concerning sleep and trouble sleeping is fairly limited. In this study we aim to provide more insight into the social inequalities in sleeping problems among Europe’s older adults. Using cross-national data we add to the fairly limited literature examining cross-country differences in sleeping problems. Methods: In order to examine the social determinants of the emergence and persistence of sleeping problems, data from the first (2004/2005), second (2006/2007) and fourth (2011/2012) wave of the Survey of Health Ageing and Retirement in Europe are used to perform mixed effects logistic regression analyses. Data consists of 10541 individuals aged 50 and older from 10 European countries. Results: In wave 1, sleeping problems are reported by 18,8% of the sample. 54% and 51,4% of them still report sleeping problems in wave 2 and 4 respectively. Women, the lower-educated and people who live alone show to be more likely to report sleeping problems. Only in women the experience of sleeping problems in wave 1 is found to be associated with a higher risk of sleeping problems at follow-up. Additionally, people tend to report more trouble sleeping as they grow older and patterns of sleeping problems show to vary between countries. Conclusion: Our study shows that sleeping problems are quite common and often persist in the older European population. The determinants of the emergence and persistence of sleeping problems appear to differ, which shows the importance of distinguishing between these two aspects of trouble sleeping. Since there is no clear pattern in the between-country variation, future cross-national research is warranted.
Keywords
older adults, sleeping problems, longitudinal analysis, SHARE

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Chicago
van de Straat, Vera, and Piet Bracke. 2014. “Social Inequalities in the Emergence and Persistence of Sleeping Problems in European Older Adults.” In 15th Biennial Conference of the European Society for Health and Medical Sociology (ESHMS), Abstracts.
APA
van de Straat, V., & Bracke, P. (2014). Social inequalities in the emergence and persistence of sleeping problems in European older adults. 15th Biennial Conference of the European Society for Health and Medical Sociology (ESHMS), Abstracts. Presented at the 15th Biennial Conference of the European Society for Health and Medical Sociology (ESHMS) - Health and welfare challenges in Europe : East, West, North and South.
Vancouver
1.
van de Straat V, Bracke P. Social inequalities in the emergence and persistence of sleeping problems in European older adults. 15th Biennial Conference of the European Society for Health and Medical Sociology (ESHMS), Abstracts. 2014.
MLA
van de Straat, Vera, and Piet Bracke. “Social Inequalities in the Emergence and Persistence of Sleeping Problems in European Older Adults.” 15th Biennial Conference of the European Society for Health and Medical Sociology (ESHMS), Abstracts. 2014. Print.
@inproceedings{5703036,
  abstract     = {Introduction: Although we spend one third of our lives asleep, sociological research concerning sleep and trouble sleeping is fairly limited. In this study we aim to provide more insight into the social inequalities in sleeping problems among Europe{\textquoteright}s older adults. Using cross-national data we add to the fairly limited literature examining cross-country differences in sleeping problems. Methods: In order to examine the social determinants of the emergence and persistence of sleeping problems, data from the first (2004/2005), second (2006/2007) and fourth (2011/2012) wave of the Survey of Health Ageing and Retirement in Europe are used to perform mixed effects logistic regression analyses. Data consists of 10541 individuals aged 50 and older from 10 European countries. Results: In wave 1, sleeping problems are reported by 18,8\% of the sample. 54\% and 51,4\% of them still report sleeping problems in wave 2 and 4 respectively. Women, the lower-educated and people who live alone show to be more likely to report sleeping problems. Only in women the experience of sleeping problems in wave 1 is found to be associated with a higher risk of sleeping problems at follow-up. Additionally, people tend to report more trouble sleeping as they grow older and patterns of sleeping problems show to vary between countries. Conclusion: Our study shows that sleeping problems are quite common and often persist in the older European population. The determinants of the emergence and persistence of sleeping problems appear to differ, which shows the importance of distinguishing between these two aspects of trouble sleeping. Since there is no clear pattern in the between-country variation, future cross-national research is warranted.},
  author       = {van de Straat, Vera and Bracke, Piet},
  booktitle    = {15th Biennial Conference of the European Society for Health and Medical Sociology (ESHMS), Abstracts},
  keyword      = {older adults,sleeping problems,longitudinal analysis,SHARE},
  language     = {eng},
  location     = {Helsinki, Finland},
  title        = {Social inequalities in the emergence and persistence of sleeping problems in European older adults},
  year         = {2014},
}