ambient stressors, ICU, nursing interventions, sleep deprivation, sleep promotion



  1. Fontana, Christine J. BSN, RN
  2. Pittiglio, Laura I. PhD, RN


To gain an understanding and increased knowledge regarding the presence and affects of ambient stressors on patients' sleep and the efficacy of implementing sleep promotion measures within the intensive care unit environment, the author reviewed 10 empirical studies. Research indicates that ambient stressors within the intensive care unit have detrimental effects on patients' sleep, and nursing interventions that focus on the abatement of ambient stressors enhance patients' sleep. In the intensive care unit, optimizing the environment to promote sleep requires the active removal of ambient stressors.