Survey of 38,000 adults shows 65% higher mortality rate for adults getting five hours’ sleep a night unless balanced with longer snooze on ‘days off’.
Many people complain they do not get enough sleep, and it seems they are right to be concerned.
However the effect of short sleeps over a few days may be countered by a later lie-in.
Åkerstedt said researchers had previously looked at links between sleep duration and mortality but had focused on sleep during the working week.
“I suspected there might be some modification if you included also weekend sleep, or day-off sleep.”.
But there was no increased risk of death for those who slept five or fewer hours during the week but then managed eight or more hours’ sleep on weekend days.
The study also found that the link between sleep patterns and mortality disappeared for those aged 65 or older. »