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Sleep Disorders Link to Premature Birth

Sleep disorders link to premature birth; psychological help for traumatised Yazidi women; study reveals brain’s aha! moment

Women who suffer from sleep disorders are at increased risk of delivering their baby early. Although half of pregnant women have problems sleeping, the study carried out by the University of California, San Francisco focused on those with serious sleep disorders. The mechanism behind the link isn’t yet known – but the researchers say that women with serious sleep problems should seek help from their doctor.

Yazidi women have been singled out by so-called Islamic State militants for especially harsh treatment – and have been left with symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder once rescued from captivity. A lack of mental health specialists in Northern Iraq has meant that they were left with little or no support to deal with the trauma of abduction and rape. Dale Gavlak has been to the Kurdish city of Dohuk where help is now available at the new Institute of Psychotherapy and Psychotraumatology.

We like to think we’re in charge of our thoughts - but our brain is often making decisions we’re not even conscious of. Dr Michael Shadlen, a neuroscientist at Columbia University's Zuckerman Institute, thinks he’s got a step closer to understanding what’s going on when the brain stops gathering information – and we have an Aha! moment.

(Photo:Tired pregnant woman © Getty Image)

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27 minutes

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Sat 19 Aug 2017 23:32GMT

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