New Survey Reveals Just How Often Adults Lay Awake at Night

According to the findings, 51 percent of the people said they only get full, uninterrupted sleep for approximately 25 percent of the year.
ByNehal Aggarwal
Associate Editor
Dec 2019
tired woman wakes up in bed
Image: Marcos Calvo / Getty Images

It seems that on most nights getting a good night’s sleep is nothing but a faraway dream. Whether it’s baby keeping you awake, a project at work or the temperature, a new survey took a look at just how often we lay awake at night and the common culprits behind it.

The survey, conducted by Hatch—a brand that offers products to help promote sleep—in partnership with consumer research company OnePoll, looked at the sleep habits of 2,000 American adults. Of the respondents, 70 percent believed they need more or better quality sleep.

They reported waking up on “the wrong side of the bed” 300 times a year—approximately six times a week—due to issues such as outside noise (20 percent), temperature (27 percent reported they woke up frustrated because their room was too hot) and unusual dreams (28 percent). Three out of 10 people reported stress and anxiety kept them awake, while others stated needing to use the bathroom (75 percent) as a common culprit.

Of those with kids, over 25 percent said their children negatively impacted their sleep at least once a week and 23 percent said they allow them to sleep in their bed. 60 percent of pet owners surveyed also said they allowed their pets to do the same.

On a whole, these things make for a lot of interrupted sleep. In fact, 51 percent of those surveyed reported they only get seven nights or less of uninterrupted sleep in an average month. That’s the same as only getting full, uninterrupted sleep approximately a quarter of the year.

While it’s common knowledge that scrolling through social media and checking emails before bed can negatively affect sleep, the survey found that watching TV or a movie in bed may actually help. 43 percent of those surveyed believed doing so positively affected their sleep, while 47 percent cited reading before bed as helpful and 41 percent cited meditation as helpful.

Along with screen time, the survey also looked at sleeping with a partner. It found that 70 percent of people are happier in their relationships when they get proper sleep. Of the respondents in a relationship, 77 percent said they sleep next to their partner (although, 20 percent admitted they would rather sleep alone). Snoring came as the leading sleep inhibitor for them, with 30 percent citing it as the cause of waking up in the middle of the night. Other habits included tossing and turning (19 percent) and differences in bedtime (31 percent).

With all the sleep inhibitors, from sharing a bed to stress to temperature, getting a good night’s sleep certainly sounds harder to achieve than it should be. Luckily, there are some things you can do to help. Whether you’re pregnant or have a newborn keeping you up, check out our tips on how to get a good night’s rest.

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