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A new study suggests smokers may get less sleep, and have more impaired sleep, compared with non-smokers.

The study questioned about 1,100 smokers, and found 17 percent got less than six hours of sleep per night, while 28 percent said they had “disturbed” sleep quality, Reuters reports.

In contrast, among the more than 1,200 non-smokers in the study, 7 percent got less than six hours of sleep, and 19 percent had disturbed sleep. The researchers took into account factors that could affect sleep, such as alcohol abuse, weight and age.

Lead researcher Dr. Stefan Cohrs of Charite Berlin medical school in Germany noted that the study does not prove that smoking directly affects sleep. He told Reuters that smokers may have other lifestyle habits that impair sleep, such as not getting enough exercise, or staying up late watching television.

He added that the stimulating effects of nicotine could directly affect a person’s sleep. Previous studies have shown that smokers’ sleep improves after they quit smoking, he said.

The findings appear in the journal Addiction Biology.

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