Article from La Presse: Inside the heads of insomniacs

Insomnia is a multifactorial disorder, but certain trends are emerging. Researchers, including world-renowned Charles Morin, Canada Research Chair in Behavioral Sleep Medicine at Université Laval, help us understand who insomniacs are.


Genetics

There are genetic bases to insomnia, but they are not yet well identified, says neurologist and researcher Alex Desautels. "There are often family histories of insomnia," he points out. Some people, he says, have more difficulty disengaging arousal structures. Being a woman also increases the risk of developing insomnia.

Probably several genes have a marginal effect on the insomnia phenotype, which are modulated by the environment.
-Alex Desautels

Personality

Insomniacs are generally less extroverted than good sleepers. They are also more prone to negative emotions, and often more anxious and perfectionist than the average bear.

A person with a tendency to worry a lot about everything in life will bring those worries to bed.
-Charles Morin

Read the rest of the article in the May 26, 2024 issue of La Presse

 

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