According to a new study, sleep duration differences remain across racial and ethnic groups
Researchers found that the proportion of people who reported sleeping less than seven hours per day climbed dramatically during the 15-year period, and it was significantly greater among black people, according to data collected by the National Health Interview Survey from 2004 to 2018.
The report was published in JAMA Network Open on April 7th.
As an indicator of sleep health, “Adequate sleep length is critical for establishing and maintaining a long life as an indicator of sleep health,” said lead author César Caraballo-Cordovez, MD, a postdoctoral associate at Yale’s Center for Outcomes Research and Evaluation (CORE).
According to current expert consensus, most individuals should obtain between 7 and 9 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period, but nonetheless, we discovered that black people were consistently less likely to report sleeping for the necessary duration.
Specifically, we discovered that black people had the highest prevalence of both short sleep length [less than seven hours] and long sleep duration [more than nine hours] across the 15 years we studied.
According to the Yale-led team, the percentage of people reporting short sleep duration was 11 points greater among black people in 2018 than it was among white people. In 2004, the difference was 7.5 points.
They looked at how these findings differed by gender and family income, and discovered that the differences were greatest for black women and black people in middle or high-income households.
When sleep duration was studied by age, there were also disparities between racial and ethnic groupings. For example, they discovered that differences were greatest among young and middle-aged black adults, diminishing marginally towards the elderly.
“This shows that problems related to working or employment situations are preventing black people from getting enough sleep in disproportionately large numbers,” Caraballo-Cordovez added.
According to senior author Harlan M. Krumholz, MD, SM, Harold H. Hines Jr. Professor of Medicine at Yale and director of CORE, sleep is intimately associated with total physical and mental health.
Both short sleep and lengthy sleep duration are linked to an increased risk of unfavorable medical outcomes, including mortality, “he explained. As a result, chronic sleep discrepancies among black individuals may be contributing to their overall poor health.
There should be intensified efforts to eradicate the socioeconomic and health factors, including racism, that hinder minoritized racial and ethnic people from getting enough sleep. “