Americans sleeping less, data says

Nearly a third of Americans are getting inadequate sleep and it’s getting worse.

“Health care professions, protective services, material moving, transportation, those are the people as a society who take care of our health and safety,” said Jagdish Khubchandani, health science professor at Ball State University. “Unfortunately, those are the ones who are most sleep-deprived.”

Short Sleep Duration in Working American Adults,” an analysis of more than 150,000 working adults from 2010 to 2018, found that prevalence of inadequate sleep — 7 hours or less — increased from 30.9% of respondents in 2010 to 35.6% in 2018.

“In the past, we have seen almost a fourth of the American population sleeping less,” said Khubchandani. “Now it’s become a third of the American population that’s sleeping lesser and lesser
every year.”

Khubchandani also suggests that from a public health perspective, chronic sleep problems need management by qualified professionals.

“We don’t have much data on the causation,” Khubchandani said. “We removed all the potential factors, like people are getting older, people are living longer, everything that we could control for. We
removed occupational characteristic changes from the equation, but still everyone is sleeping less, which should mean that people in the United States have more chronic diseases like pain disorders,
more use of technology. Clearly there has been evidence out there in the stress in America studies that every year stress has been increasing.”

Data from the National Health Interview Survey were analyzed for the paper.