IMPACT OF DISRUPTION TO SLEEP PATTERNS IN THE INTENSIVE CARE UNIT By Institution Date Introduction Sleep disruptions in the Intensive Care Units (ICU) remain one of the central concerns in the field of nursing. Consequences of sleep disruptions range from the impairment of the cognition of patients to reduced capacity of the patients’ immune system…
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One indisputable fact is that lack of sleep affects the health and progress of the healing for patients in the ICU. A study on the impacts of sleep disruptions in the ICU indicated that the nature of sleep patterns in a nursing environment has some significant associations with the mortality rates (Friese, 2007, p. 1210). Nursing institutions that promote good sleep habits for patients in the ICU have also shown significant reductions in the levels of mortality. On the other hand, nursing institutions that do not have any structures for promoting good sleep habits were also associated with high mortality rates. The findings of this study were consistent with other findings that showed a positive association between the states of health of patients in the ICU with the number of hours of sleep that the patients managed to get (Friese, 2007, p. 1212). For instance, these findings showed that most of the patients who managed to get uninterrupted sleep were able to respond faster and better to treatment than those who were occasionally interrupted by the nurses or other factors. Discussion Various studies have developed an association between the rate of patients’ readmission to the nursing homes and the disruptions to the sleep patterns (Patel, Chipman, Carlin & Shade, 2008, p. 309; Patel, Chipman, Carlin & Shade, 2008, p. 310). Some of the inferences drawn from this study are that the sleep patterns of the patients in the ICU promoted the natural defences of the body, thus, allowing the patients to develop long-terms health stability. These associations are also consistent with other studies that have established the existence of positive influences between long term health balances of individuals to the quality of sleep that they receive (Eliassen & Hopstock, 2011, p. 140). Opinions of some nursing experts suggest that the promotion of environmental conditions that support quality sleeping patterns is more sustainable than interventions that involve the use of sleep inducers. Patients who are occasionally subjected to sleep inducers often lapse into delirium after a short while and may require stronger inducers in order for them to acquire the same amount of sleep (Patel, Chipman, Carlin & Shade, 2008, p. 310). Some of the studies have established a connection between the impairment of the body’s ability to combat infections (Eliassen & Hopstock, 2011; Friese, 2007). Quality sleep strengthens the immune system and provides the enabling environment for the functioning of the defensive mechanism of the body. Poor sleeping patterns are usually associated with prolonged healing and negative responses to the treatment processes. Patients who fail to get sufficient sleep are also likely to suffer from hallucinations and unstable psychological states. This is because the state of a patient’s mental balance is affected by the kind of pressure and strain that occur during the period of wakefulness. In order for a patient in the ICU to develop the necessary defences, it is necessary to develop a stable sleeping schedule with sufficient time that would allow for the release of the strain and pressure that operate at the mental level. The role of nurses in mitigating the adverse
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