Work-related factors, sleep debt and insomnia in IT professionals

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BackgroundReduced sleep can be associated with a risk of health problems. Information technologies (IT) professionals often work long hours and this could have an effect on their sleep quality.AimsTo examine the prevalence of sleep debt, insomnia and long working hours among Finnish IT professionals and to analyse which specific work-related factors are associated with shortened sleep.MethodsCross-sectional, representative data from a questionnaire survey of IT professionals. Hierarchical regression analyses were applied to investigate relationships of sleep debt and insomnia.ResultsA total of 2334 IT professionals responded to the survey. Thirty-seven per cent reported sleep debt of at least 1 h and 6% of at least 2 h, while 16% reported insomnia. Twenty-seven per cent worked for a minimum of 50 h a week, while 31% spent at least 50 h a week on work. The most important factors associated with both sleep debt and insomnia were work-related demands requiring long hours, mental stamina and problem solving and positive perceptions of work, such as job control and importance of the respondents’ own work in their life.ConclusionsEven though long working hours were common among IT professionals in Finland, sleep debt and insomnia were not. Work-related factors were associated with insufficient sleep.

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