POLL: Missing Sleep Could be Bad – Really Bad – for You

Health professionals offer a serious warning -- make sure you get the sleep you need. A study released last week suggests getting less than six hours' sleep each night increases your chance of early death. Dr. Paneet Patni at Kelsey-Seybold says more study is needed, because there are some conflicting reports out there.

“There are some studies that actually have looked at this and have not shown an association of shorter sleep duration with adverse cardio-metabolic outcomes,” Patni points out, adding, “But, there are many that have.”

He's not discounting the results, which suggest lack of sleep could lead to heart attack or stroke, especially among patients with conditions like obesity, type-2 diabetes or high blood pressure – but, that might not be all that’s going on.

“Obviously,” he says, “sleeping less could just be a marker of something else, that is also causing an increased risk of heart disease.”

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