Crosstalk between Sleep Disturbance and Opioid Use Disorder: A Narrative Review

Document Type : Review Article(s)


1 Department of Neuroscience and Addiction Studies, School of Advanced Technologies in Medicine, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

2 Centre of Precision Rehabilitation for Spinal Pain, School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Birmingham, Birmingham, UK

3 Department of Neurology, School of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

4 Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Research Center, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran



Recent studies have revealed a growing number of patients affected by opioid use disorders (OUDs).
Comorbid disorders are suspected to increase the risk of opioid-related adverse effects or treatment failure.
The correlation of opioid use with sleep disturbances has been reported in many different studies and
suggested to be linked to the brain regions involved in reward processing. This narrative review was intended
to discuss the most recent developments in our understanding of the intricate interaction between sleep
disturbance and OUD. In addition, in this study, the effects of sleep problems on the occurrence of
unpleasant consequences in addiction management, such as craving and relapse in OCD patients, were
highlighted. It has been shown that drug use may trigger the induction of sleep disturbances, and those
suffering from difficulties in sleeping are prone to relapse to drug use, including opioids. Moreover,
pharmaceutical sleep aids are likely to interfere with opiate use.