Sleep…we all need it, but what is considered enough? According to the National Sleep Foundation (NSF), the following chart illustrates your needs by age group:
With our 21st century lifestyles, we sometimes sacrifice our hours of sleep just to have some “me time” or to accomplish one last thing before bed. But, is it the same for everyone? Have you ever wondered how much sleep the rest of America is getting? The non-profit National Sleep Foundation has been polling Americans since 1991, compiling statistics on variants such as age, sex and ethnicity, while attempting to improve the quality of life for Americans suffering from sleep problems.
This year’s poll, “The Effects of Communications Technology on Sleep,” shows you’re not alone if you think you rarely get a good night’s sleep.
Generations are split on what kind of technology keeps us up at night, but of those surveyed, 95% said they used some type of communication device right before bed. Baby boomers (46-64 year olds) and Gen X’ers (30-45 year olds) were more likely to watch TV, while the younger generations, Y’ers (19-29) and Z’ers (13-18) were either on their computers or phones, chatting with friends, playing video games, or just surfing the net.
What is it about these technologies that keep us awake?
So, which generation do you think is affected the most by these bedtime activities? If you guessed the Gen Z’ers and Y’ers, you were right. One in five report feeling “sleepy” most days and find it difficult to concentrate in school. While we might try to combat our tiredness with caffeine and naps, improving sleep would be the better choice. Here are some highlights of healthy sleep advice from the NSF:
So, the next time you’re tempted to turn on the TV in bed or have that nightcap, ask yourself, is it really worth feeling tired all the next day. You might also want to check out the National Sleep Foundation (http://www.sleepfoundation.org/) website; it has so much useful information, enough to keep you up all night reading!