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Is Your Job Making You Sleep Deprived?

February 16 2024 - A survey by Champion Health of 4,300 UK employees, found that one in three employees thought their sleep quality was poor. Fewer than a fifth (19%) rated their sleep as being of good or excellent quality. These findings were worse than a similar survey conducted in 2023.

Champion Health's Workplace Health Report 2024 highlighted sleep quality as a major impediment to productivity in the workplace with 70% of employees rating their productivity as average or worse:

  • 61% of respondents saw tiredness as the main factor impacting productivity
  • 32% highlighted high stress as the main issue
  • 48% of respondents reported feeling fatigued at work
  • 47% reported waking up regularly at night
  • 35% said they had difficulty in getting to sleep

According to Harry Bliss, CEO of Champion Health:

"The data from our Workplace Health Report 2024 underscores the urgent need for organisations to prioritise employee wellbeing beyond just mental and physical health - which sleep significantly impacts. Poor sleep quality is not only affecting individual health but is also a detriment to overall workplace productivity and energy levels." "As leaders, it is crucial that we address the root causes of sleep-related issues and implement strategies that foster a healthier and more balanced work environment, leading to improved sleep quality. Investing in employee wellbeing is an investment in the success and sustainability of our organisations."

Sleep issues

Sleep is the most vital component to having both an enjoyable and a fruitful day. A Sleep Council study in 2018 revealed that the industry you work in can greatly affect how you sleep.

As it turns out, those who work in Human Resources sleep the best, with far more than one in ten (12.9%) claiming that they can get more than nine hours of sleep most nights. The study also discovered that those who work in marketing, transport and engineering are the most likely to resort to using sleep remedies, with 23.1% of marketing employees saying they drink alcohol or use over-the-counter methods to help them to drift off. Over half (57%) of Human Resource professionals claim that they have never turned to these remedies.

In the Sleep Council study, workplace stress appeared to be the biggest factor for losing out on sleep, with almost half (47.2%) of British workers citing this as a reason for lying awake at night. For those working in education and retail, the numbers were even higher, with 54.3% of teachers citing workplace stress as keeping them awake at night, along with 52% of those working in retail.

The Sleep Council study also revealed that 14.2% of us check their work emails right before going to bed. About a fifth of computing and telecommunications workers (20.3%) and architects (19%) admit to checking their work emails last thing at night. HR professionals just inch out the national average at 14.3%.

Getting better issues

Whatever your profession, it is essential to be well rested, so you need to optimise your conditions. Whilst companies like Google are installing sleeping pods to ensure their workers are getting enough sleep, blinds and shutters specialist Thomas Sanderson have listed a few simple changes you can make at home to get the best night's sleep possible.

Blocking out light and noise from the street, installing window blinds in your bedroom can reduce disruptions to your sleep. This would be highly beneficial for the 17.6% of people who said that external noises are the biggest disruptor of their sleep.

With more than 11% of people saying that sunlight is the reason that they could not sleep well; certain blinds can also remotely regulate the lighting in your room. This way they replicate a sunrise which wakes you up naturally, or they keep the daylight out so you can sleep uninterrupted after returning from a night shift.

Shutting down your electronics before going to bed will help to prevent the build-up of neurotoxins, which disrupt the brain's metabolism. Looking at a screen late at night causes your brain to switch to 'work mode', instead of winding down.

Not getting a consistent amount of sleep each night could lead to serious health issue like insomnia, so it's essential to try and get the most restful night's sleep possible, whatever your profession.



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