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HeadWay Issue #220 - How's Your "Multidimensional Sleep Health"?
February 21, 2023

In this issue:

How's Your "Multidimensional Sleep Health"?

The RU SATED (Sleep Health) Scale

Say what?! Sleep Health

How's Your "Multidimensional Sleep Health"?

Healthy sleep is one of the most powerful migraine-fighters available. But it gets complicated when migraine attacks can rob you of sleep. In other words, one problem can make the other worse, which makes the other worse...

This is why it's so important to watch for - and treat - sleep problems, when you're treating migraine.

Sleep health is not just a matter of hours in bed. Quality and timing matter when it comes to migraine, and general health.

One of the best quick questions that you can ask yourself is, "When I woke up this morning, did I feel refreshed?" (read more here.)

But you need to go deeper than that if you're going to really diagnose the problem.

A new questionnaire may be an excellent "next step" for doctors and patients who are diagnosing sleep health. It's called the RU SATED Scale.

The scale, developed in 2014 (originally as the SATED Scale, before an extra question was added), has been studied as a way to look at multiple dimensions of sleep. You can see the questions in the next section.

RU SATED stands for Regularity, Satisfaction, Alertness, Timing, Efficiency, and Duration - all important "dimension" to sleep health.

The questionnaire is designed to be evaluated by a specialist, but just looking at the questions can give you insight into your sleep health. If it raises concerns or questions, think seriously about seeing a sleep specialist.

Many people are so used to sleep problems that they don't realize that they're there, and they don't see how much they're affecting their health over time. Sleep is an extremely important dimension of health. Diagnosing the problem is the first step, and treatment can not only be a major migraine-fighter, it can improve your mental and physical health in significant ways.

The RU SATED (Sleep Health) Scale

This is a questionnaire that is best used by a sleep specialist. If it raises red flags for you, talk to your doctor.

Each question should be answered with Rarely/Never (0 points), Sometimes (1 point), or Usually/Always (2 points).
  1. Do you go to bed and get out of bed at the same time (within one hour) every day?
  2. Are you satisfied with your sleep?
  3. Do you stay awake all day without dozing?
  4. Are you asleep (or trying to sleep) between 2:00 a.m. and 4:00 a.m.?
  5. Do you spend less than 30 minutes awake at night? (This includes the time it takes to fall asleep plus awakenings during sleep.)
  6. Do you sleep between 7 and 9 hours per day?
If you score your answers you end up with a number between 0 (very poor sleep health) and 12 (excellent sleep health). How these scores are evaluated will depend on your specific situation, but if your score is less than 7 you should make sleep health treatment a priority.

For a detailed discussion of the scale, read Sleep Health as Measured by RU SATED: A Psychometric Evaluation

Say what?! Sleep Health

What actually is sleep health? There's no universally accepted definition. However, Dr. Daniel J. Buysse, who developed the RU SATED Scale, suggested this definition:
Sleep health is a multidimensional pattern of sleep-wakefulness, adapted to individual, social, and environmental demands, that promotes physical and mental well-being. Good sleep health is characterized by subjective satisfaction, appropriate timing, adequate duration, high efficiency, and sustained alertness during waking hours.

To read more about Dr. Buysse's reasoning, see his paper here: Sleep Health: Can We Define It? Does It Matter?
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