Sleeping pill use linked with high blood pressure

Using sleeping pills on a regular basis is linked with use of an increasing number of blood pressure medications over time, according to a new study of 752 older adults with hypertension published in the journal Geriatrics & Gerontology International.

The association was observed regardless of sleep duration and quality, body mass index, diet, physical activity, and hypertension control.

Although additional research is needed to understand this link, the findings suggest that sleeping pill use may be an indicator of a future need for greater hypertension treatment and the need to investigate underlying sleep disorders or unhealthy lifestyles that may contribute to hypertension.

The study’s senior author, Dr. José Banegas, of the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, said: ‘Previous reports on associations of sleep characteristics with blood pressure and hypertension were focused on middle-aged adults; however these associations were absent or inconsistent among older adults.’