Abnormal Sleep Duration Is Associated with a Higher Risk of Accidental Injury

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Abstract

Objective

Develop normative data for adult sleep duration and determine if nonstandard sleep time relates to the likelihood of accidental injury.

Study Design

Cross-sectional analysis.

Setting

National health information database.

Methods

The National Health Interview Survey, 2004-2013, was examined for adult sleep time and accidental injury within the past 3 months. The mean hours slept per night was determined. The relationship between sleep time and incidence of accidental injury was determined for any injury, injury while driving, and injury while working, adjusting for demographic variables.

Results

Among 221.4 million adults (raw sample, N = 282,692), the mean sleep time was 7.17 hours (95% confidence interval [95% CI], 7.16-7.18 hours). Men and women slept very similar times (7.14 vs 7.17 hours, respectively), and sleep time decreased until the fifth decade (minimum, 6.99 hours), increasing each decade thereafter; 2.81% of adults reported being accidentally injured in the preceding 3 months. Too little sleep and excessive sleep times were both associated with higher rates of accidental injury (odds ratio per hour of deviation from mean, 1.16 [95% CI, 1.12-1.19]), adjusting for age, sex, marital status, and education level. Similar increased odds ratios were noted for injury while driving (1.11 [95% CI, 1.01-1.22]) and injury while at work (1.12 [95% CI, 1.04-1.20]) with sleep time deviation.

Conclusion

Most adults sleep between 7 and 8 hours nightly. Adults with sleep time outside this range, with either less or more sleep, have increased rates of accidental injury. These data highlight the need for sufficient quantity and quality of sleep in preventing accidental injury.

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