Lack of Sleep has Become a Public Health Epidemic

Sleep studies have shown that lack of sleep weakens the immune system, impairs memory and learning, and has been shown to contribute to obesity, diabetes, depression, cancer, mental disorders and hypertension. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has even classified sleeplessness a “Public Health Epidemic”. (1) The average adult requires seven to nine hours of sleep, however most do not get it. The CDC found that 50-70 million Americans suffer from chronic sleep and wakefulness. Additionally, more than 35% or nearly 75,000 survey respondents indicated that they average less than seven hours of sleep per night. (2)

Last year, the RAND Corporation published a study that calculated the amount of money business loss because of poor sleep in the United States. It was projected that $411 BILLION dollars, or 2.28% of the gross domestic product was lost to poor sleep. That is approximately $1,258 per person based upon the current US population. Sleep is one of the most important things a person can do to ensure their health and wellbeing. Sleep is that time during the day that the mind can rest and process and the body can heal. Without this vital time each day, the body weakens and becomes sick. A majority of the health crises that are affecting America today can be linked to lack of sleep, including obesity, diabetes, depression and cancer.

References:
1- https://www.aaas.org/news/sleep-deprivation-described-serious-public-health-problem
2- https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/PDF/wk/mm6008.pdf

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