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First International Bedroom Poll Released

Posted: September 16, 2013

The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) released its first international poll today, the 2013 International Bedroom Poll, comparing sleep times, attitudes, habits and bedtime routines of those in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, the U.K., Germany and Japan between the ages of 25 and 55 years old.

Japan and the U.S. report the least amount of sleep.

Japanese and Americans report sleeping about 30 to 40 minutes less on workdays than those in the other countries surveyed, averaging six hours and 22 minutes and six hours and 31 minutes of sleep, respectively. Two-thirds of Japanese (66%) say they sleep less than seven hours on work nights, compared to 53% of Americans, 39% in the United Kingdom, 36% of Germans, 30% of Canadians and 29% of Mexicans. One-in-five from the U.S. (21%), Japan (19%) and the U.K. (18%) report sleeping less than six hours a night during the work week, about twice the rate of the other countries (11% in Mexico, 10% in Germany and 7% in Canada).

Perhaps to compensate for less sleep, about one-half (51%) of both Japanese and Americans have taken at least one nap in the past two weeks. Every country reported sleeping in on weekends, with an average of an extra 45 minutes of sleep on days they do not work.

"As the first international public opinion poll on sleep, the National Sleep Foundation 2013 Bedroom Poll makes an important contribution to the field," commented Namni Goel, research associate professor of Psychology in Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine and a member of the NSF 2013 International Bedroom Poll expert panel. "Although we know that everyone sleeps, the rather remarkable cultural differences within this universal experience have not been adequately explored. It is NSF's hope that this initial poll will inspire more research on this critical yet understudied topic."

Less than one-half of people in most countries are sleeping well every night.

Less than one-half of people in Mexico (48%), the U.S. (44%), Canada (43%), the U.K. (42%) and Germany (40%), and slightly more than one-half in Japan (54%) say they get a good night's sleep every night or almost every night on work nights or week nights.