Sleep and alertness disturbance and substance use disorders: A bi-directional relation
Roehrs T, Sibai M, and Roth T. Sleep and alertness disturbance and substance use disorders: A bi-directional relation. Pharmacol Biochem Behav 2021; 203:173153.
Pharmacology, biochemistry, and behavior
The majority of the literature describing the relation of sleep/alertness disturbance and substance use disorders (SUD) has focused on the disruptive effects of substances with abuse liability on sleep and alertness. Rarely have studies or literature reviews assessed or discussed how sleep/alertness disturbance affects substance use. This paper focuses on the sleep/alertness disturbance side of the relation. We argue that the relation is bi-directional and review evidence showing that sleep/alertness disturbance affects all phases of the addiction cycle, including the initiation, maintenance and relapse of SUD. We review a variety of substances across all phases of the addiction cycle and conclude sleep/alertness disturbance is a critical factor in both understanding and treating SUD.