New Survey Tells Us Why We’re Not Sleeping

A new global survey is giving us a very interesting snapshot about why we’re not sleeping well, and what we’re doing about it.

The fifth annual survey from Phillips USA asked sleep-related questions to more than 13,000 people in 13 countries to capture attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors around sleep. This year’s results show global sleep satisfaction remains low with worry/stress, relationships and cell phone use reported as the key reasons people aren’t getting enough rest. 

According to the survey findings, less than half of people are satisfied with their sleep, with worry/stress reported as the most limiting factor to a good night’s sleep. Interestingly, fewer people in 2020 are taking action to improve sleep compared to 2019.  Reading before bed was the most popular strategy used to improve sleep.

“The decrease in people taking action to improve sleep is alarming, especially when it is clear people around the world deeply value sleep. Sleep deficit impacts people both mentally and physically, so we need to educate people on available sleep resources and empower them with the confidence that their efforts will pay off,” said Mark Aloia, PhD, Global Lead for Behavior Change, Sleep & Respiratory Care at Philips. “As we head into the next decade, Philips is focused on designing a future where technology leveraged across the entire sleep ecosystem can help people get the most out of their lives.”

A number of additional things were found by the survey to be getting in the way of a good night’s sleep.  More than a third reported sleeping separately from their spouse in order to try to sleep better, and slightly less than a third say that their spouse’s sleep difficulty is impacting their relationship.  

Technology is also a problem, with about four in 10 saying they use their phone either right before bed or as soon as they wake up.

One piece of good news is that there is a desire to sleep better.  About 60% of people agree they are interested in new information or strategies to help them get a better night’s rest.