Lack of sleep hurting productivity: survey

One third of Australians have called into work sick due to lack of sleep, and 38% have drifted off at desk or during meetings, according to a new survey.

The Sealy Sleep Census, conducted by bed manufacturer Sealy and CQ University, polled 13,089 respondents and revealed 96% of Australians were waking up tired in the morning. Only 4% said they felt refreshed when they woke up.

The survey revealed poor sleep was impacting Australian businesses, potentially costing employers millions of dollars in lost productivity – almost 70% admitted their productivity was being negatively affected by tiredness.

“The census is the largest and most in-depth study of its kind ever undertaken in Australia and forms an important part of our ongoing commitment to research and innovation in the sleep arena,” Sealy spokesperson Ross Gage says.

Management executives said they needed less sleep to function effectively, compared to those who had other jobs, studied, or were unemployed.

While the majority of respondents recognised that eight hours per night was the recommended amount of sleep, 70% regularly woke up during the night.

Noise was a key reason for sleep interruptions, with animals contributing to 29.1% of sleep disturbances, noisy neighbours (18.5%), traffic (12.7%), rain (16.9%) and 35% of respondents saying they were woken up by their partners snoring, going to the bathroom, or using their phone during the night.

Other key findings:

•           People who exercised reported falling asleep faster than people who did not exercise.

•           16% of respondents required some help with falling asleep (supplements or prescribed medication).

•           27% of respondents admitted to talking or being heard to talk in their sleep, but only 4% said they have been known to sleep walk.

•           Those who did not have a TV in the bedroom obtained more sleep than those who did.


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