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U of A study links sleep behavior with suicide risk in college students

LA Johnson/NPR
College student sleeping on dorm room floor

A study out of the University of Arizona’s College of Medicine has identified a link between sleep problems and suicidal thoughts and behaviors.

Researchers in the Department of Psychiatry evaluated suicidal thoughts and behaviors in college students during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. They then compared the data with multiple measures of sleep behavior, including sleep duration, timing, insomnia, nightmares and depressive symptoms.

Researchers say the “findings highlight how multiple sleep deficits may contribute to suicide risk” in this particular population.

In 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported suicide was the second leading cause of death among individuals ages 10-14 and 25-34, and the third leading cause of death among individuals ages 15-24.