A new study from Italy investigated paradoxical insomnia.
What’s the paradox? Some people perceive that they have severe insomnia; but their sleep appears to be normal when measured by a sleep study.
The study involved 20 people with paradoxical insomnia and 20 controls. They were monitored during an overnight sleep study.
Results show that the people with paradoxical insomnia estimated that they slept for less than five hours; but the sleep study found that they slept for about 7.75 hours.
They perceived that it took about 51 minutes to fall asleep; but they actually fell asleep in about nine minutes.
The authors suggest that the problem may have to do with “arousal instability.”
The people with paradoxical insomnia estimated that they woke up four times during the night; but the sleep study showed that they had an average of 11 awakenings.
They may have subjectively grouped these arousals together as a single, prolonged event. They thought that they were awake for one long period of time; instead they briefly woke up numerous times.
Learn more about insomnia.