In the absence of any empirical study on how the novel coronavirus is affecting the sleep patterns of people, there have been many assumptions that have been doing rounds about the correlation between the two.
In this regard, a team of researchers led by Ghadir Zreik analyzed the impact of the pandemic and its correlation with home confinement on maternal insomnia and maternal anxiety. It has been revealed in the study that during the pandemic the rate of maternal insomnia has jumped to 23% from 11% that was recorded during the pre-COVID era.
According to the study, sleep problems have been reported in over 250 children in Israel between 6-72 months.
In the study, the researchers recruited around 120 male children as participants who have 31.27 months as their mean age whereas 2.15% was the mean age of children in families. Around 38% of the children recruited for the study were firstborns and 33.97 was the mean age of the mothers with 16.37 years as the mean duration of their education.
Moreover, as many as 54.2% of mothers said that they have witnessed a change in their family income due to the pandemic. The main focus of the study was to identify if mothers have observed a change in their and their children’s sleeping patterns before and after the crisis. This was a 4-week study conducted online as Israel is currently in lockdown.
It has been observed by the researchers that the frequency of maternal insomnia is high due to the pandemic when compared with the pre-pandemic era.
It is vital to note here that 80% of mothers commented that they have not noticed any change in the duration or quality of the sleep of their children during the pandemic.
However, around 30% of mothers were of the opinion that they have observed a negative change in the duration and quality of sleep of their children. There were a few mothers who claimed to have observed a positive change.
As per the study’s findings, it can be said that sleep pattern changes are volatile and changing constantly during the pandemic but it is difficult to establish a uniform pattern or identify a consistent impact. The author recommended that further studies are required to dig deeper on the subject.
It is an open secret that the pandemic has changed the lives of people in a way they have never imagined and led to the development of many psychiatric issues like insomnia, anxiety, and depression. The changes caused in the lifestyle during the pandemic like work from home and online schooling has only made the matters worse.