Background: Complaints of sleep disturbance are common in elderly individuals. The quality of life (QOL) for people who have insomnia is thought to be worse than for those who do not have insomnia. In this study we investigated the influence of disturbed sleep on morale in elderly people who live independently. Methods: A survey of the necessity of public nursing care for all those aged over 65 years was performed in Kumamoto city, Japan. Three hundred subjects from the elderly population living at home without special care were sampled at random and they filled out a questionnaire regarding sleep, psychiatric symptoms and attitudes towards their own aging. Results: A logistic regression analysis found psychiatric symptoms and problems keeping awake to be independently related to a negative attitude towards one's own aging. Neither sleep, sex nor age demonstrated any relationship with the negative attitudes of elderly individuals. Conclusion: Excessive daytime sleepiness is related to poor morale regardless of both the quality and quantity of sleep and psychiatric symptoms.
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