New research from St. Michael’s Hospital (Toronto) has found that insomnia does not put patients at increased risk of developing high blood pressure.

Researchers say previous studies that suggested a link between insomnia and high blood pressure were often based on small numbers of people. They examined data from nearly 13,000 Americans who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, a series of studies designed to assess the health and nutritional status of adults and children in the United States. The survey is unique in that it combines interviews and physical examinations.

“After adjusting for many factors, including whether or not participants were receiving blood pressure pills or sleeping pills, there were generally no associations between insomnia and high blood pressure, even among people who were suffering from insomnia the most often,” said Nicholas Vozoris, a respirologist at St. Michael’s. “These results should reassure patients and their doctors that insomnia and high blood pressure are unlikely to be linked.”