The study found that individuals who received gender-affirming therapy were less likely to experience sleep disturbances, indicating a potential protective effect.
A study led by Michigan Medicine found that transgender and gender nonconforming teens and young adults were four times more likely to develop sleep disorders than cisgender youth. The study analyzed claims data from her over 1.2 million individuals from age 12 to her age 25.
results published in Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicineshowed that transgender youth were 5.4 times more likely to have insomnia and three times more likely to have sleep apnea and other sleep disorders.
The sleep health of transgender and non-gendered adolescents is rarely explored, but these results raise concerns about the number of individuals with disorders that impair sleep quality, said lead authors. Ronald Gavidia, M.D., sleep medicine physician at the University of Michigan School of Health. He has a PhD in Neurology in the Department of Sleep Medicine and UM He is also an Assistant Professor in Neurology at the Medical School.
“Given the high prevalence of sleep disorders associated with cisgender youth, clinicians should consider screening this population and testing for such disorders,” Gavidia said.
Reports on transgender youth and adults show a high prevalence of depression and anxiety symptoms, which are known to affect sleep quality and health. We believe that health may contribute to the association between transgender and gender nonconforming identities and insomnia.
“Transgender and gender nonconforming identities precede mental health disorders, and both can influence the diagnosis of insomnia,” says an epidemiologist in the Department of Neurology’s Division of Sleep Medicine and a specialist in neurology. said lead author Garritt Levi-Dunietz, Ph.D., M.P.H., assistant professor. UM Medical School.
More than half of the transgender youth who participated in the study were receiving gender-affirming therapy. That group was half as likely to have a sleep disorder as transgender people who did not receive treatment.
The authors conclude that gender-affirmation therapy can prevent deterioration of sleep health caused by psychological stressors due to stigma and discrimination against the transgender community.
“Since there is a two-way relationship between mood disorders and insomnia, gender reassignment through affirmative therapy may improve mental health and reduce insomnia rates by improving gender dysphoria, bad moods, and stress among minorities.” There is a risk,” Gavidia said.
The researchers say future studies should further investigate the burden of sleep disturbances before and after gender-affirmation therapy for these populations.
Reference: “Gender Identity and Transsexuality: Relationships with Sleep Disorders in Youth in the United States” Ronald Gavidia, M.D., M.Sc., Daniel G. Whitney, M.D., Sherri Hirschner, M.D., Ellen M. Selkie, M.D. , Master of Public Health, by Liva Taumann, MD and Galit Levi Dunietz, Ph.D., MPH, 1 November 2022, Available here. Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.
This study was funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the University of Michigan Health Equity and Inclusion and Diversity Fund, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute . .