According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society, adults should be getting at least seven hours of sleep per night. Sadly, many of us are falling short. The CDC reports that almost 1/3 of American adults are not sleeping the recommended seven hours.
What if we there a quick fix? The Beatles once sang, “Can’t Buy Me Love,” but what if we could buy some sleep? How much are people willing to pay?
Well, take a look a the infographic below to find out just how much our fellow Americans are prepared to shell out for a decent night of sleep.
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The Benefits Of Healthy Sleep
For the sake of argument, let’s say we could pay for sleep. The Sandman comes knocking and, lo and behold, he even takes credit cards! How does healthy sleep affect the body and what are the benefits?
First off, getting proper sleep can improve heart health. People who don’t obtain the recommended amount of healthy sleep can have a higher risk of heart disease, stroke, and heart attack, but getting good sleep can significantly lower that risk.
In addition, healthy sleep is good for our brains. Multiple studies have linked sleep deprivation with increased dementia and Alzheimer’s risk, and other recent studies have found that, during healthy sleep, beta-amyloids are flushed out of our brains. As these proteins build up, they can interfere with the communication between neurons.
Let’s not forget our immune system because, when we get enough sleep, our chances of getting sick also go down. Also, getting the proper amount of rest, we are more likely to get over the sickness more quickly.
Finally, when we are properly rested, we just feel better. Waking up after a good seven or eight hours, we can experience improved mood and feel less stress.
Sleep And Work
We also broke down our survey not just by state but also by industry. This is partly because sleep affects not just our health but our work performance as well.
A 2018 study found that workers who slept between five and six hours were 19% less productive when compared to those who slept at least seven hours. What’s more, those who slept less than four hours, were almost 30% less productive!
Now, that is assuming workers even show up. During a 2016 study, researchers discovered that workers who don’t sleep enough are absent from work more often. These employees were 171% more likely to have missed one or two days of work in the last 30 days if they were not getting enough sleep.
Companies can corporations might want to find out a way to fix their employees’ sleep because they are losing serious money every year. They might not be able to buy good sleep, but poor sleep is definitely taking money out of their pockets. According to a 2010 study, sleep-deprived workers each cost their employers $1967 annually.
Taking money out of the equation, sleep-deprivation is simply dangerous for workers. A 2014 study found that sleep-deprived workers were 1.62 times as likely to get in an accident while on the job.
How To Get The Best Sleep Possible
There is one way we can spend money on sleep, and that is by investing in a comfortable mattress and bedding. Finding the best mattress can make the difference between a night spent staring at the ceiling and one in which we’re lost in dreamland.
Other than that, we can put the wallet away. There are plenty of steps we can take to promote a healthy night of sleep. Basically, we need to practice good sleep hygiene. This includes:
- Try to keep the bedroom cold, dark, and quiet, and use blackout curtains or earplugs if necessary.
- Kick technology out of the bedroom because the blue light emitted by tablets and phones can disrupt sleep.
- Don’t drink alcohol or coffee too close to bedtime as this can seriously disturb sleep.
- Try to avoid heavy and spicy foods before going to bed.
- Attempt to keep a regular sleep schedule, and don’t sleep in too late on the weekends.
Keeping all this in mind, it really isn’t necessary to pay for sleep. There are plenty of free choices we can make every day to get a great night of sleep.