HEALTHY LIVING

What Your Income And Occupation Say About Your Sleep Habits

Sep 03, 2013
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The key to a good night's sleep may be rolling in the dough.

According to a new survey of sleep habits from Britain's Sleep Council, 83 percent of people earning £75,000 or more -- that's $116,000 and above -- reported sleeping very or fairly well most nights, compared to a nationwide average of 73 percent at all income levels. In other words, wealthy people were 20 percent more likely to get a good night's sleep on any given evening, regardless of other factors.

The survey also examined how particular occupations affect sleep habits. People in the legal profession, for example, were most likely to say they slept fairly well most nights. Manufacturing and utilities workers were most likely to say they slept very well most nights, according to the survey data, provided by the Sleep Council to HuffPost. The worst sleepers? HR workers. Nearly 10 percent said they sleep very poorly most nights.

Overall, not enough people are reaching the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep a night that most adults need, according to the survey. Nearly 40 percent of people in the legal profession get seven to nine hours, while only 21 percent of people working in architecture, engineering and building can say the same. (Nearly 40 percent of people in that field said they get an average of only five to six hours a night!)

Here's a breakdown by profession -- how does your occupation stack up?

Still Awake?

Every profession has its challenges, but it's not only work keeping us awake. The survey results revealed what's keeping workers up at night. Perhaps unsurprisingly, worry and stress are foremost in our minds. But noise and light are also problematic.

What You Can Do

It's pretty unlikely your boss is going to buy the "I need to make $116,000 -- for my health!" line of reasoning. But no matter your occupation or income, there are a number of simple tricks to improve your slumber tonight. First, make sure your bedroom is cool, dark and quiet. Cut off your caffeine use early enough in the day. And reconsider how you spend your last hour or so before bedtime. Electronic gadgets are notorious sleep stealers. The blue wavelength of light omitted by your cell phone, laptop, tablet and television is particularly disruptive to your body's natural melatonin production and can therefore sabotage sleep.

Yet, the majority of survey respondents said they use some kind of gadget during their bedtime routine. Here's what workers are doing right before lights out:

So what do you think: Does your job impact your sleep? Tell us how in the comments below!

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