Sleep in num­bers

The Guardian Weekly - - Weekly Review -

• Two-thirds of adults in de­vel­oped na­tions fail to ob­tain the nightly eight hours of sleep rec­om­mended by the World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion.

• An adult sleep­ing only 6.75 hours a night would be pre­dicted to live only to their early 60s with­out med­i­cal in­ter­ven­tion.

• A 2013 study re­ported that men who slept too lit­tle had a sperm count 29% lower than those who reg­u­larly get a full and rest­ful night’s sleep.

• The time taken to reach phys­i­cal ex­haus­tion by ath­letes who ob­tain any­thing less than eight hours of sleep, and es­pe­cially less than six hours, drops by 10-30%.

• If you drive a car when you have had less than five hours’ sleep, you are 4.3 times more likely to be in­volved in a crash. If you drive hav­ing had four hours, you are 11.5 times more likely to be in­volved in an ac­ci­dent.

• A hot bath aids sleep not be­cause it makes you warm, but be­cause your di­lated blood ves­sels ra­di­ate in­ner heat, and your core body tem­per­a­ture drops. To suc­cess­fully ini­ti­ate sleep, your core tem­per­a­ture needs to drop about 1C.

• There are now more than 100 di­ag­nosed sleep disor­ders, of which in­som­nia is the most com­mon.

• Morn­ing types, who pre­fer to awake at or around dawn, make up about 40% of the pop­u­la­tion. Evening types, who pre­fer to go to bed late and wake up late, ac­count for about 30%. The re­main­ing 30% lie some­where in be­tween.

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