Insomnia is considered the most common sleep disorder. Sleep deprivation, regardless of its causes, leads to deterioration in the quality of life (QoL), poorer daytime functioning, and reduced professional productivity. It also contributes to an increase in the number of occupational and road accidents. Most research on sleep problems has been conducted on samples of urban residents, with few studies among people living in rural areas, where high rates of sleep problems have also been recorded.

The aim of the study was to determine sleep problems and their impact on the QoL of rural and urban residents of the West Pomeranian Province of Poland.

Material and methods:
The study involved 597 people: 187 (31.32%) rural and 410 (68.68%) urban residents. The research instruments used in the study were standardized questionnaires, namely the Athens Insomnia Scale (AIS), Insomnia Severity Index (ISI), Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS), and the Short Form 36 Health Survey (SF-36), and the author’s questionnaire concerning socio-demographic data.

There was a statistically significant relationship between insomnia and gender, both among rural (p < 0.050) and urban (p < 0.005) residents. Diseases that turned out to be significantly related to insomnia in rural residents were diabetes (p < 0.045) and depression (p < 0.015). Women living in the city assessed their QoL worse than men (p < 0.0005). The lowest QoL was demonstrated in people with insomnia.

The results suggest that insomnia is often a permanent condition in the Polish population. Bearing in mind the prevalence of insomnia among Poles, especially in the 60–79 age group, it is necessary to introduce obligatory tests of sleep disorders and QoL into the practice of a family doctor, due to the long-term adverse effects of persistent insomnia.

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