Researchers have looked at the sleeping habits of men and women from around the world, and have discovered that we could all do with getting a little bit more.
The sleep study, which was published in Science Advances, used a smartphone app called Entrain to collect data from 5,000 users to determine how we sleep. One of the aims of the study was to investigate the effects of society on sleep habits.
There were some interesting revelations from the study. In general, women slept more than men, and those who were exposed to natural, outdoor light went to sleep earlier than those who spent their days indoors.
While lab tests have shown that factors like age, sunrise time, and sunset time can affect how much sleep people get, the study found that someone’s home country (which the researchers used as a proxy for social factors) has a greater impact on bed time. The study found that those who got more sleep went to bed earlier, but didn’t necessarily wake up any earlier or later.
The Dutch and New Zealanders were found to sleep the most, while those in Singapore and Japan get the least.
The researchers wrote, “This points to the hypothesis that biological cues around bedtime are either weakened or ignored for societal reasons, thereby leading individuals to delay their bedtime and truncate their sleep duration as a result.”
So, if you find that you’re not getting enough sleep, it could be because of society. It may be time to ignore Facebook or the requests to go out for a nightcap.