Sleep Deprivation Statistics

A collection of some of the more mind-blowing sleep deprivation statistics that are currently present in the United States

Your job, the food you eat and your daily lifestyle habits all affect how well you sleep. But how can you avoid chronic sleep deprivation?

When you reflect on the last time you went a night without good sleep, you may not always think about how it could relate to your diet, your gender or even cancer down the road. It turns out, even after just one night of restless sleep, your physical and mental health can take effect.

Getting a good night’s rest, though, is not always a priority to everyone you meet. In fact, resting well has become increasingly difficult with technology always at our fingertips, internal and external pressure to perform well at work or school, and unhealthy lifestyle habits. Sometimes, we even make excuses for a poor sleep cycle, promising ourselves we’ll make up for it a different night. (Hint: that rarely helps).

Is sleep something you wish came easier to you? Do you wonder if your poor sleeping habits could actually be a chronic sleep disorder? Take a look at our collection of 38 facts surrounding sleep deprivation to learn how a lack of quality sleep takes a toll on all aspects of your life and how you can improve your sleep. We also included some of the facts in this infographic.

Sleep Statistics – The Facts

Only 10% of Americans prioritize sleep when it comes to daily activities. Fitness & nutrition, work and hobbies come above sleep.

[1] National Sleep Foundation


A woman with narcolepsy asleep on her desk in front of a computer.

In a survey conducted by The Better Sleep Council, U.S. adults stated they need at least 7.18 hours of sleep per night in order to feel productive at work, up from the 6.84-hour average nightly sleep employed adults get.

[2] The Better Sleep Council


Over 60% of college students were qualified as poor-quality sleepers in a 2010 study.

[3] Journal of Adolescent Health


48% of U.S. school-age kids sleep 9 hours per night most weeknights, according to a 2019 study from the American Academy of Pediatrics (APA). This is the low end of the recommended 9-11 hours per night for 6-13-year-olds, according to Psychology Today.

[4] American Academy of Pediatrics,[5] Psychology Today


Sleep paralysis, a condition that keeps you from being able to move upon waking up from sleep, affects around 8% of the general population.

[6] International Journal of Applied and Basic Medical Research


Americans are projected to spend $52 billion on sleep aids by 2020.

80-90% of adults with sleep apnea are undiagnosed.

[8] American Academy of Sleep Medicine


shutterstock 453971707

Short sleep duration among working U.S. adults increased from 2010 (30.9%) to 2018 (35.6%).

[9] Journal of Community Health


You would need four days of good sleep to make up for one hour of sleep debt.

How Poor Sleep Affects Your Health & Wellbeing

Sleeplessness increases the risk of obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.

[11] International Journal of Occupational Medicine and Environmental Health


For students, sleep plays a critical role in GPA. Students who sleep 9 hours or longer earned higher GPAs than students who sleep 6 hours or less, according to a study from the National Institutes of Health.

[12] Nature and Science of Sleep


When it comes to sleep deprivation, you are most accident-prone in the morning, afternoon, and mid-afternoon hours.

[13] Nebraska Rural Health and Safety Coalition


Long-term sleep deprivation can shorten your life. Sleeping five hours or less per night increases cardiovascular disease risk in middle-aged men.

[14] European Society of Cardiology


Your amygdala, the emotion center of the brain, increases reactivity by 60% as a result of poor sleep.

[15] Annual Review of Clinical Psychology


Man sleeping in standing position holding yellow balloon against a blue background.

Drowsy driving caused 795 deaths in 2017.

[16] National Highway Traffic Safety Administration


After just one night of bad sleep, your pain threshold drops by 15%.

Sleep Statistics – Food, Drink & Sleep

Almonds and walnuts contain melatonin, a common hormone people take as a supplement to help them get better sleep.

[18] National Sleep Foundation


people and bedtime concept - happy young woman in pajama and eye sleeping mask drinking coffee from mug over starry night sky and cloud background; tea for sleep concept.

Vitamin B6 can enhance dream recall. Try foods like bananas, fish or poultry to meet your daily requirements.

Dehydration can disrupt sleep. When it comes to healthy hydration, the National Sleep Foundation suggests women aim for 91 fluid ounces per day from both food and beverages, while men should reach around 125 ounces daily.

[20] National Sleep Foundation


A 3-ounce piece of wild Atlantic salmon contains sleep-promoting nutrients, including 416mg of potassium and 25g of magnesium.

Sleep Statistics – Deprivation Causes

About 50% of insomnia cases have ties to psychological stress, including depression and anxiety.

[22] National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)


Have no time for sleep. People with coffee, pillows and clock try to wake up while hurrying up. Always late. Headache and overslept. Business, working, hurry up, deadlines. Creative collage.

Shift workers who work irregular hours have a greater chance of suffering from insomnia than 9-5 employees.

[23] National Sleep Foundation


One alcohol binging episode can alter the gene that regulates your sleep.

One night of poor sleep can increase anxiety levels by 30%. If not treated, it could turn into a cycle.

[25] Society for Neuroscience


About 1 in 4 childhood cancer survivors experienced difficulty falling and staying asleep.

[26] Johns Hopkins Medicine


Sleep Disorder Statistics

An estimated 50 to 70 million Americans suffer from a sleep disorder.

[27] National Academies Press


Young woman comparing with two things; eucalyptus versys bamboo sheets concept art.

Insomnia is the leading sleep disorder for adults who are 60 and older.

[28] National Institutes of Health


More than 1 in 3 working U.S. adults don’t get enough sleep each night.

[29] Journal of Community Health


Among adults, around 40% of men regularly snore, while only 24% of women do.

[30] National Sleep Foundation


Healthy sleepers take around 10-20 minutes to fall asleep, while sleepers who may have a problem take anywhere from 20-45 minutes to drift off.

31.9% of 13- and 17-year-olds in a study of 49,050 kids ages 6-17 do not get enough sleep.

[32] American Academy of Pediatrics


Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) can stop breathing for 10-60 seconds.

[33] National Sleep Foundation


Sleep Improvement Suggestions

Synching your body to natural light balances your internal clock and trains your brain to wake up and fall asleep at a reasonable schedule.

[34] National Sleep Foundation


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) can improve sleeping patterns by reducing anxiety levels that can result in sleep problems, like insomnia.

Set your thermostat anywhere around 65 degrees, a perfect temperature to fall asleep to.

[36] National Sleep Foundation


According to the National Sleep Foundation, taking naps, especially later in the day, to “catch up” on lost sleep can actually do more harm than good because it tends to confuse your internal clock. Instead, go to bed earlier and set a sleep routine.

[37] National Sleep Foundation


Beautiful Brunette is Waking up in the Morning, Stretches in the Bed, Sun Shines on Her From the Big Window. Happy Young Girl Greets New Day with Warm Sunlight Flare.

Avoiding alcohol before bedtime can reduce the risk of sleep apnea.


The Facts

[1] Sleep & Effectiveness are Linked, but Few Plan Their Sleep. National Sleep Foundation (2018). Retrieved from

[2] Working Adults Don’t Get Enough Sleep and It Impacts Productivity. The Better Sleep Council. 2019. Retrieved from

[3] Sleep Patterns and Predictors of Disturbed Sleep in a Large Population of College Students. Journal of Adolescent Health. 2010. Retrieved from

[4] American Academy of Pediatrics. (2019, October 25). Only half of US children get enough sleep during the week. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 20, 2019 from

[5] Buckhalt, J. A. (2018, November 24). How Much Sleep Do School-Age Children Need? Retrieved from

[6] Olunu, E., Kimo, R., Onigbinde, E. O., Akpanobong, M. U., Enang, I. E., Osanakpo, M., … John Fakoya, A. O. (2018). Sleep Paralysis, a Medical Condition with a Diverse Cultural Interpretation. International journal of applied & basic medical research8(3), 137–142. Retrieved from

[7] Consumer Reports. (2016. January 14). People are desperate for shut-eye, and turned to drugs, supplements, and high-tech gadgets for help. Retrieved from

[8] American Academy of Sleep Medicine. (2008). Obstructive Sleep Apnea. Retrieved from

[9] Khubchandani, J. & price, J.H. (2019). Short Sleep Duration in Working American Adults, 2010-2018. Journal of Community Health. Retrieved from

[10] Kitamura, S., Katayose, Y., Nakazaki, K. et al. Estimating individual optimal sleep duration and potential sleep debt. Sci Rep 6, 35812 (2016). Retrieved from

How Poor Sleep Affects Your Health and Wellbeing

[11] Orzeł-Gryglewska J. (2010). Consequences of Sleep Deprivation. Int J Occup Med Environ Health. 23(1):95-114. Retrieved from

[12] Hershner, S. D., & Chervin, R. D. (2014). Causes and consequences of sleepiness among college students. Nature and science of sleep6, 73–84. Retrieved from

[13] Nebraska Rural Health and Safety Coalition. Sleep Deprivation: Causes and Consequences. Retrieved from

[14] European Society of Cardiology. (2018, August 26). Sleeping five hours or less a night associated with doubled risk of cardiovascular disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 20, 2019 from

[15] Goldstein, A. N., & Walker, M. P. (2014). The role of sleep in emotional brain function. Annual review of clinical psychology10, 679–708. Retrieved from

[16] National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Drowsy Driving. Retrieved from

[17] Pevzner, H. (2019, June 7). The New Science of Sleep. Retrieved from

Food, Drink & Sleep

[18] Food and Drink that Promote a Good Night’s Sleep. National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved from

[19] University of Adelaide. (2018, April 27). Vitamin B6 helps people recall their dreams. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 20, 2019 from

[20] The Connection Between Hydration and Sleep. National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved from

[21] Medical News Today. Which foods can help you sleep? Retrieved from

What can cause sleep deprivation?

[22] National Alliance on Mental Illness. Sleep Disorders. Retrieved from

[23] Shift Work and Sleep. National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved from

[24] University of Missouri-Columbia. (2018, June 19). How a single binge drinking episode affects gene that regulates sleep: Discovery explains alcohol’s link to brain activity, sleep disturbances. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 19, 2019 from

[25] E. B. SIMON1, M. P. WALKER2

1Berkeley, CA; 2Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA. Under slept and Overanxious: The neural correlates of sleep-loss induced anxiety in the human brain. Program No. 192.11. 2018 Neuroscience Meeting Planner. San Diego, CA: Society for Neuroscience, 2018. Retrieved from!/4649/presentation/38909

[26] Johns Hopkins Medicine. Lack of Sleep and Cancer: Is There a Connection? Retrieved from

Sleep Disorders

[27] Institute of Medicine (US) Committee on Sleep Medicine and Research; Colten HR, Altevogt BM, editors. Sleep Disorders and Sleep Deprivation: An Unmet Public Health Problem. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2006. 3, Extent and Health Consequences of Chronic Sleep Loss and Sleep Disorders. Retrieved from:

[28] National Institutes of Health. A Good Night’s Sleep. Retrieved from

[29] Khubchandani, J. & Price, J.H. “Short Sleep Duration in Working American Adults.” J Community Health (2019). Retrieved from

[30] Snoring and Sleep. National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved from

[31] Pevzner, H. (2019, May 7). The New Science of Sleep. Retrieved from

[32] American Academy of Pediatrics. (2019, October 25). Only Half of U.S. Children Get Enough Sleep During the Week. Retrieved from

[33] Aging and Sleep. National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved from

How to Get a Better Night’s Rest

[34] Sunlight and Sleep. National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved from

[35] MedlinePlus. Insomnia. Retrieved from

[36] What Temperature Should Your Bedroom Be? National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved from

[37] What Causes Insomnia? National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved from

[38] Simou, E., Britton, J., & Leonardi-Bee, J. (2018). Alcohol and the risk of sleep apnoea: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Sleep medicine42, 38–46. Retrieved from

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Rory Parry