Introduction Sleep disorders have a profound impact on individuals’ well-being, yet there remains a critical lack of awareness regarding their prevalence and significance in India.
Methods An observational study conducted at Shree Krishna Hospital in India involved 150 doctors and 150 patients over 12 months. Validated questionnaires were used to assess their perception and awareness of sleep disorders, revealing insights into their understanding and knowledge.
Results Among doctors, 100% recognized significance of sleep, with varying levels of knowledge in specific areas. Functions of sleep were understood by 91.3%, while 80.7% were familiar with different types of sleep disorders. Common sleep disorders were recognized by 84.7%, but awareness of rare sleep disorders (36.7%) and associated risk factors (78%) was limited. Specific disorders such as OSA were recognized by 88.7% of doctors, while CSA garnered awareness from 57.3%. However, knowledge gaps were noted in the diagnosis of sleep disorders (61.3%), diagnostic tools like polysomnography (60%), and assessment scales (49.3%).
Among patients, awareness levels were alarmingly low, with only 48% acknowledging the importance of sleep. Knowledge regarding sleep disorders (16.7%), symptoms (10%), and risk factors (9.3%) remained notably limited. Specific symptoms such as snoring (20%), drowsy driving (39.3%), waking up unrefreshed (24.7%), sleepwalking and sleeptalking (48%), excessive daytime sleepiness (11.3%), and obesity as a risk factor (15.3%) were poorly recognized.
Discussion and Conclusion This study highlights a significant disparity in the perception and awareness of sleep disorders between doctors and patients in India. Although doctors demonstrated an overall understanding, improvements are needed in knowledge pertaining to rare sleep disorders, diagnosis, and treatment options. Patients require enhanced education on the importance of sleep, recognizing symptoms, and available treatments. Bridging this knowledge gap is crucial to promote better sleep health outcomes for all individuals.
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