Technology can interfere with sleep: survey

March 8, 2011

Washington – Use of communication technology before bedtime may lead to inadequate sleep during the week, according to survey results released March 7 from the National Sleep Foundation.

The survey indicated approximately two-thirds of individuals are not meeting their sleep needs during the week, with 43 percent of survey respondents between the ages of 13 and 64 saying they rarely or never get adequate sleep on weeknights. Lack of sleep may have a negative impact in the workplace, as 74 percent of respondents older than 30 said sleepiness affects their work.

Experts suggest a connection between lack of sleep and corresponding high usage rates of electronic communication devices within the hour before bed, as exposure to artificial light may make falling asleep more difficult. More than 60 percent of adults often watch television or use a computer in that hour.

The survey was released during National Sleep Awareness Week (March 7-13). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, sleep impairment is linked to a number of safety and health hazards. Approximately one-third of survey respondents reported drowsy driving at least once in the month prior to the survey.