The Sleep-Work Connection

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New Better Sleep Council research reveals how employment can negatively affect slumber and what workers can do to avoid sleepless nights

broken alarm clockAmericans aren’t sleeping enough. And those with a job seem to have a harder time getting good rest than others.

That’s the latest findings from the State of America’s Sleep study commissioned by the Better Sleep Council, the consumer education arm of the International Sleep Products Association. The first report from the data revealed young women were the worst sleepers and male retirees were the best. The second report detailed the leading causes of sleeplessness — stress, pain and money. (To read these studies, check our Better Sleep Council story index.)

The third report from the data looks at work-related factors that negatively impact employees’ sleep. To begin, the State of America’s Sleep study reveals that more than one-third (41%) of employed adults get less than seven hours of sleep per night and over half (54%) often or frequently wake up feeling tired. They also are less likely to be excellent sleepers compared with the adult population at large.

Poor sleepers tend to be under pressure at work (44%), don’t feel valued in the workplace (22%), don’t enjoy what they do (18%) and aren’t working in a friendly environment (12%).

Work worries and environment aren’t the only sources leading to poor sleep. Employed Americans who aren’t getting enough rest tend to check social media, watch TV or have a snack before bed. Additionally, they don’t participate in leisure activities or hobbies, such as gardening, meeting new people, attending concerts or plays, or playing sports.

Employers can educate staff about ways to improve their sleep and develop strategies to help them. The result should be improved productivity.

A few strategies for better sleep include:

O Limit electronics, including TV, at least an hour before bedtime.

O Get into a regular sleep routine and go to bed and wake up at the same time every day.

O Create an ideal bedroom for quality sleep and upgrade your mattress if it’s causing discomfort.

UPCOMING Watch for the Better Sleep Council’s new survey on the buyer’s journey.

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