Sleep and Cancer: Tips to Manage Insomnia, Other Sleep Issues

Regularly getting uninterrupted, refreshing sleep is vital for good physical and mental health, helping to boost your immunity, keep the mind sharp, maintain a healthy weight and even reduce the risk of a variety of chronic diseases. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) recommends that adults get seven to eight hours of sleep each night, although that varies by individual.

But for an estimated 50 percent of those diagnosed with cancer and undergoing treatment, getting the recommended amount of sleep may be challenging. Insomnia and abnormal sleep-wake cycles are common for cancer patients, according to the NIH, impacting their quality of life and potentially their health.

“When I talk with patients, they report sleep difficulties for a variety of reasons,” says Kristen Trukova, PA-C, RD, Physician Assistant at City of Hope Chicago. “Thirty to 50 percent of people diagnosed with cancer have severe sleep difficulties. That can be anything from ‘I can’t fall asleep’ to ‘I keep waking up’ to ‘I don’t feel rested,’ so there are many ways they define adequate sleep. Of course, fatigue is huge for people with cancer, especially when they’re in treatment.”

While sleep disturbances may be common, being aware of the various causes and following a few essential tips may help many cancer patients get the critical and healing sleep they need.

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About City of Hope
Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) is now City of Hope®.  To expand patient access to personalized, leading-edge cancer care, City of Hope® acquired Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) last year, uniting our shared vision, values and commitment to high-quality, compassionate care that puts patients first. Today, we aren’t just part of City of Hope; we are City of Hope

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