Sleep disturbance during military deployment

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Sleep disturbance is one of the most commonly reported health concerns during military deployments. Historically, sleep problems have probably been a common occurrence in and around military battlefields since the times of the earliest military conflict. Over the past decade, there has been an increasing interest in sleep disturbance in military personnel deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. Research in civilian populations suggests that there are a number of predisposing, initiating, and perpetuating factors that contribute to sleep disruption. It is believed that many of these same factors apply to deployed military service members, with the addition of a number of unique deployment-related factors that may initiate sleep problems. These factors include jet lag after transcontinental deployments, hot and cold temperatures, loud noises, trauma exposure, and nightmares, to name only a few. This chapter reviews and synthesizes the published literature on sleep disturbance during military deployments. A series of studies of military personnel deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan have been conducted by Mental Health Advisory Teams (MHAT) sponsored by the US Army Surgeon General. Several of the MHAT reports include data on sleep disturbance during military deployment, and that data is reviewed in this chapter. Other chapters within this book target sleep patterns before, during, and after military deployment (Chap. 47), sleep and fatigue issues in continuous operations (Chap. 49), and countermeasures for sleep loss and deprivation (Chap. 50). Therefore, we have limited the current chapter to sleep disturbance during military deployment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSleep and Combat-Related Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
PublisherSpringer New York
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781493971480
ISBN (Print)9781493971466
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


  • Insomnia
  • Military deployment
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Sleep medications

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine
  • General Neuroscience


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