A recent article in The Oregonian (it was originally from The Washington Post) was titled “The Buzz, Income and Sleep.”
It cited a report from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention that called sleep deficiency a public health epidemic. That report concluded that “people who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to suffer from chronic diseases, cancer, increased mortality, and reduced quality of life.”
The data for this report came from the 2013 National Health Interview Survey. In additional to the negative impact on health caused by not enough sleep, the report also found a linear and positive relationship between income and sleep. What does that mean?
Just two-thirds of people living below the poverty line in 2013 reported getting more than six hours of sleep per night. Nearly three-fourths of people with incomes at 400 percent of the poverty level (that’s earning $94,200 per year) reported getting six or more hours of sleep.
A very likely reason for this lack of sleep is that people living below the poverty line need to work multiple jobs, but that is another issue. Another report found that multiple job holders were 61 percent more likely than others to report sleeping six hours or less on weekdays.
Here are more details from the CDC report: “Persons experiencing sleep insufficiency are also more likely to suffer from chronic diseases such a hypertension, diabetes, depression and obesity, as well as from cancer, increased mortality, and reduced quality of like and productivity.” Drowsy driving causes 80,000 traffic accidents each year. One-thousand of these accidents are fatal.
How much sleep did you get last night?