Raise your hand if you’ve been personally victimized by your sleep schedule! Everyone knows how frustrating a lack of sleep can be and how the aftereffects can interfere with your day.
Which is the Most Sleep-Deprived State in America?
There are so many factors that can influence sleep quality, from hormone imbalances to lifestyle choices, and especially with events from this past year having a lasting impact.
One of the first places people turn to for advice on getting a better night’s sleep is the internet. So we analyzed Google search terms related to sleep quality to gather data on sleep quality across the US, considering each of the 50 states, combining several search terms for increased accuracy. We then looked at the approximate number of searches per million people to account for the population differences from state to state.
So, what did we find? It would seem Massachusettsans have the worst quality sleep, while South Dakotans have the best night’s sleep. This came as a bit of a surprise given that places like New York are known for their busy, hectic lifestyle. Then again, it’s also a bit surprising that Hawaii was ranked at #7 for having the worst quality of sleep.
We also looked at sleep trends across the US, combining multiple search terms for each item to increase the accuracy of findings. In terms of items to help you sleep, Melatonin came up top, with 789,400 searches for the hormone, occurring naturally in the body and used in synthesized form.
Similarly, when considering sleeping conditions, insomnia was searched for more than any other sleep condition, suggesting that difficulty in sleeping, in general, is the nation’s most common sleep-related concern.
What can we do about this?
It has long been accepted that working out can help promote a good night’s sleep, with a lack of exercise associated with an increased risk of insomnia. “It makes sense that tiring yourself out physically during the day could result in a greater likelihood of falling asleep and staying asleep at night,” says Mollie McGlocklin, founder of sleepisaskill.com. “And yet, when we find ourselves in a spiral of poor sleep, prioritizing exercise is often one of the first things that go out the window.”
“Consistent movement timing can help anchor your circadian rhythm, the 24-hour process regulating the sleep-wake cycle, improving your ability to fall asleep. Cardio can be particularly helpful here, boosting serotonin, known to help regulate your sleep-wake cycle”.
That means, when you’re feeling extra stressed and find yourself having a restless night’s sleep, don’t forget to exercise! Sleeping can affect your day and your fitness goals, so remember to try to get 8 hours of sleep each night.