7 Hours of Sleep – Not 8?

Is 7 Hours of Sleep – Not 8 Enough?

The WSJ is reporting on studies that show 7 hours sleep is the optimum to function the next day—not 8, as long believed:

WSJ: Sleep experts close in on the optimal night’s sleep

American adults get less sleep today than in the past, research shows. Corbis

How much sleep do you really need?

7 hours of sleepExperts generally recommend seven to nine hours a night for healthy adults. Sleep scientists say new guidelines are needed to take into account an abundance of recent research in the field and to reflect that Americans are on average sleeping less than they did in the past.

Several sleep studies have found that seven hours is the optimal amount of sleep—not eight, as was long believed—when it comes to certain cognitive and health markers, although many doctors question that conclusion.

The Way We Sleep

  • People say they need an average of 7 hours, 13 minutes of sleep to function at their best. They sleep 6 hours, 31 minutes on an average weekday, and 7 hours, 22 minutes on weekends.
  • 69% of Americans get less sleep on weekdays than they say they need.
  • Sleeping with a partner is preferred by 60% of adults. About 1 in 5 people sleep with a pet.
  • Pajamas are worn by 73% of people and 12% sleep with nothing on.
  • A third of adults sleep with one pillow, 41% use two and 14% keep four or more pillows.

Source: National Sleep Foundation, 2013 International Bedroom Poll

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