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Pandemic insomnia could be ‘gateway complaint’ that leads to substance abuse

Insomnia during the pandemic could be the “gateway complaint” that leads people to increased substance use like drugs and alcohol.

Disruption in our daily lives can often impact how we sleep at night. Recently, there’s arguably been no greater disruption than the pandemic. Kaiser Permanente Mid-Atlantic psychiatrist Dr. Leonardo Cubillos says he’s seeing more fatigue in his patients than ever before in his 20-year career.

“Many of my patients come, for example, for sleep problems or come to see me for depression. And then as we talk, it becomes evident that they are drinking too much, or smoking too much or using a particular substance,” he told ABC7 News reporter Victoria Sanchez.


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