There are too many people out there who do not realize how important it is to get a good night’s sleep. Sixty years ago, the average american slept 7-8 hours a night. Now, 6 hours is the average. Sleep disorders are on the rise, which means workplace accidents related to insomnia and fatigue are on the rise as well. Shift work is also an issue, as those workers claim to be sleeping as little as 4 hours a day. Here is some more information about sleep and sleep deficiency that will inspire you to hit the hay a little earlier tonight.
Why Are We Sleeping Less?
There are a few reasons why we are sleeping less on average than in the past. Our work and home lives have drastically changed, making getting a quality sleep harder than ever. For one, Americans are working longer hours than in the past, which means there is less time outside of work to do the things we want and need to do, like spend time with family. Plus, we are constantly connected through our smartphones and devices, which means that some of us are never really “off” work, since we can be contacted at any time. This also means we are trying to fall asleep after essentially shining a beam of light into our faces right before bedtime.
First of all, not getting enough sleep can be dangerous. Workplace accidents increase when workers are not properly rested. Every year, people are killed because they are fatigued at work. Employers lose up to $92 billion every year in lost productivity from tired employees.
How To Get More Sleep
There are several things an employer and employee can do to try to get more sleep. Employers should create an environment that values and encourages rest, such as having a nap room and encouraging staff to unplug after work hours. Employees should make sure they are getting to bed at a consistent time each night, and to try to do something other than stare at their phone before trying to sleep.
If everyone were to get more sleep, workplaces would be much safer, and would probably provide employees with a less cranky environment, too.
If you are a Minnesota worker who has been injured on the job, do not hesitate to contact Minnesota Occupational Health online, by phone or by visiting one of our Twin Cities locations. Our staff of physicians, many of whom are board certified in occupational medicine, offer years of experience and understanding in addressing work injuries.