Numerous studies on sleep talk about the benefits of a good night’s rest. However, either from necessity or a particular choice of lifestyle, many people spend less time than needed resting through the hours of the night. According to Donald Trump, he spends only about four hours a night sleeping and encourages others to follow his lead. In his book “Think Like a Billionaire” published in 2004 he says that sleep in a waste of time.
However, a new study finds that skipping resting hours has severe consequences, especially for the U.S. economy. According to a team of researchers with the non-profit organization RAND Europe, the lack of sleep drastically increases one’s mortality risk while reducing productivity levels at the same time.
Hence, an individual who spends less than six hours a night sleeping has a 13 percent higher mortality risk. Sleeping anywhere in between seven to nine hours per night is the healthy amount scientists recommend for adults. Not only does sleep deprivation affects one’s health, but as the study shows, but approximately 1.2 million working days go to waste due to lack of sleep among the U.S. working class.
In some cases, the employees do not show up at their workplace at all, which is more commonly known as absenteeism. On the other hand, the employees do present themselves at the workplace, but are unable to perform or do so at sub-optimal levels. This in otherwise known as presenteeism.
“Why Sleep Matters – The Economic Costs of Insufficient Sleep” is the first study of its kind. It quantifies the economic losses due to sleep deprivation among workers from different countries around the globe. The list includes Canada, the U.S., Japan, and Germany. The research features a collection of data gathered from each country on sleep deprivation.
“Our study shows that the effects of a lack of sleep are massive”, says Marco Hafner, the main author of the study and lead researcher at RANDE Europe.
He adds that not only of the individual’s health is at risk, but both the productivity levels and the country’s economy suffer drastic consequences. He believes that if the people who sleep on average under six hours a night change their habit and improve their sleep quality, the U.S. economy will be able to add $226.4 billion to its annual revenue. However, the U.S. suffers the most from sleep deprivation, costing its economy roughly $411 billion each year. Japan closely follows with an annual loss of $138 billion. Germany and the U.K. come in third place with roughly $50 billion lost every year because of sleep deprivation.
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