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Psychol Aging. 1989 Sep;4(3):352-6.

Twenty-four-hour sleep-wake patterns in a nursing home population.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Diego.


Sleep-activity patterns were objectively recorded over a 24-hr period in 19 elderly nursing home residents. On average, both sleep and wake times were observed during every hour of the 24 recorded hours; however, the sleep pattern of the residents was fragmented so that they rarely experienced even a single hour of consolidated time spent sleeping. It is hypothesized that several independent factors, including compensation for lost sleep, increased total time in bed, weakening of social constraints, and deterioration of the circadian sleep-wake rhythm, are interacting to produce this increase in sleep fragmentation.

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