Americans Are Not Getting Enough Sleep

- July 9, 2018

While sleep is very important for your mental and physical well being, it is also important for our economy. According to a RAND report, ever year, sleep costs the US around $411 billion.

According to the “Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report” by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than a third of adult Americans are not getting sufficient sleep. The study was conducted in all 50 states, as well as the District of Colombia.

The recommended amount of sleep by the Sleep Research Society and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine for adults 18 to 60 years old is 7 hours. People who sleep for fewer hours than what is recommended are at risk of developing several chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, metal illness, stroke and heart disease.

The director of the Population Health Division of the CDC said if people made a few changes in their lifestyle like going to bed each night at the same time and rising every morning at the same time, removing computers and televisions from the bedroom and putting mobile phones on silent, they can get a healthier sleep.

Recommended Sleep

According to National Sleep Foundation, there are 9 age categories for sleep. The following categories and recommend sleep time have been decided by 18 experts in science, sleep, medicine and physiology:

Older Adults (65 Years Old) – 7 to 8 hours
Adult (26 to 64 Years Old) – 7 to 9 hours
Young Adult (18 to 25 Years Old) – 7 to 9 hours
Teenagers (14 to 17 Years Old) – 8 to 10 hours
School Age (6 to 13 Years Old) – 9 to 11 hours
Preschool (3 to 5 Years Old) – 10 to 13 hours
Toddler (1 to 2 Years Old) – 11 to 14 hours
Infant (4 to 11 Months) – 12 to 15 hours
Newborn (0 to 3 Months) – 14 to 17 hours

In the data reviewed by the CDC from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), it was found that sleep duration varies by race/ethnicity, marital status, geography and employment.

Following are the key findings based on BRFSS:

54% of the Native Hawaiians, non-Hispanic blacks, multiracial non-Hispanics and 60% of the American Indians had a lower healthy sleepy duration compared to 67% of non-Hispanic whites, 66% of Hispanics and 63% of Asians
A low adult population living in the Appalachian Mountains and southeastern region reported having 7 hours of sleep every day (studies show that these 2 regions have a high prevalence of chronic conditions, especially obesity)
More than 51% of people reported that due to their unemployed state, they weren’t getting enough sleep
72% of the people holding a college degree reported that they weren’t able to sleep well either
67% of married people reported better sleep patterns as compared to 62% who weren’t married and 56% who were separated

Healthcare experts recommend practicing good sleeping habits for healthier sleep. Moreover, adults need to map out their schedule, so that they can take out adequate time for sleep.

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