Sleep

Key points

  • About one-third of U.S. adults and children (under 14) and three-quarters of high schoolers do not get enough sleep.
  • Insufficient sleep is linked to increased risk of anxiety, depression, obesity, heart disease, injury, and other serious conditions.
  • We can promote sleep health through research and surveillance, public and provider education, clinical guidance, and traffic safety education.
A young woman in bed sleeping.

More information

Keep Reading: Sleep

Definition details

Population
Children aged 4 months to 14 years old.
Numerator
Children aged 4 months to 14 years whose parents report they usually get insufficient sleep duration (<12 hours for children aged 4–12 months, <11 hours for children aged 1–2 years, <10 hours for children aged 3–5 years, <9 hours for children aged 6–12 years, and <8 hours for children aged 13–14 years), on average day (for children aged 0–5 years) or average weeknight (for children aged 6–14 years).1
Denominator
Children aged 4 months to 14 years whose parents reported child’s hours of sleep on average day (for children aged 0–5 years) or average weeknight (for children aged 6–14 years).
Measure
Prevalence (crude) from a 2-year cycle.
Time Period of Case Definition
Average day (for children aged 0–5 years) or average weeknight (for children aged 6–14 years).
Summary
During 2020–2021, insufficient sleep duration (<12 hours for children aged 4–12 months, <11 hours for children aged 1–2 years, <10 hours for children aged 3–5 years, <9 hours for children aged 6–12 years, and <8 hours for children aged 13–14 years, on average) was reported for 35.0% of children aged 4 months to 14 years.2 Insufficient sleep duration among children is associated with an increased risk of a number of conditions—such as obesity, diabetes, poor mental health, attention and behavior problems, and poor cognitive development.1,3 Parents can support the practice of good sleep habits to improve sleep duration in their children by setting appropriate regular bedtimes and limiting screentime use.4,5
Notes
Indicator does not convey variation in sleep duration (for instance, weekday vs. weekend sleep) or quality of sleep. Both might affect the risk for chronic disease. Indicator does not identify specific sleep problems, such as sleep disordered breathing and insomnia, which are associated with different chronic conditions.
Data Source
National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH).
Related Objectives or Recommendations
Healthy People 2030 objective: EMC-03. Increase the proportion of children who get sufficient sleep.
Related CDI Topic Area
School Health.
Reference 1
Paruthi S, Brooks LJ, D’Ambrosio C, et al. Recommended amount of sleep for pediatric populations: a consensus statement of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. J Clin Sleep Med. 2016;12(6):785–786. doi: 10.5664/jcsm.5866.
Reference 2
Increase the proportion of children who get sufficient sleep — EMC 03: data. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Healthy People 2030. Accessed October 26, 2022. https://health.gov/healthypeople/objectives-and-data/browse-objectives/children/increase-proportion-children-who-get-sufficient-sleep-emc-03
Reference 3
Wheaton AG, Claussen AH. Short sleep duration among infants, children, and adolescents aged 4 months–17 years — United States, 2016–2018. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2021;70:1315–1321. doi: 10.15585/mmwr.mm7038a1
Reference 4
Pyper E, Harrington D, Manson H. Do parents’ support behaviours predict whether or not their children get sufficient sleep? A cross-sectional study. BMC Public Health. 2017;17:432. doi: 10.1186/s12889-017-4334-4.
Reference 5
Hale L, Guan S. Screen time and sleep among school-aged children and adolescents: a systematic literature review. Sleep Med Rev. 2015;21:50-58. doi:10.1016/j.smrv.2014.07.007

Population
Students in grades 9–12.
Numerator
Students in grades 9–12 who report usually getting insufficient sleep duration (<8 hours for those aged 13–18 years, on average school night).1
Denominator
Students in grades 9–12 who report hours of sleep on average school night.
Measure
Prevalence (crude).
Time Period of Case Definition
Average school night.
Summary
In 2019, 77.9% of United States high school students reported insufficient sleep duration (<8 hours for those aged 13–18 years on average school night).2 Insufficient sleep duration among high school students is associated with an increased risk of a number of conditions—such as obesity, diabetes, injuries, poor mental health, attention and behavior problems, and poor academic performance.1 Parents can support the practice of good sleep habits to improve sleep duration in their children by setting appropriate regular bedtimes and limiting evening light exposure and technology use.3,4
Notes
Indicator does not convey variation in sleep duration (for instance, weekday vs. weekend sleep) or quality of sleep. Both might affect the risk for chronic disease. Indicator does not identify specific sleep problems, such as sleep disordered breathing and insomnia, which are associated with different chronic conditions.
Data Source
Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS).
Related Objectives or Recommendations
Healthy People 2030 objective: SH-04. Increase the proportion of high school students who get enough sleep.
Related CDI Topic Area
School Health.
Reference 1
Paruthi S, Brooks LJ, D’Ambrosio C, et al. Recommended amount of sleep for pediatric populations: a consensus statement of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. J Clin Sleep Med. 2016;12(6):785–786. doi: 10.5664/jcsm.5866
Reference 2
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Healthy People 2030. Increase the proportion of high school students who get enough sleep — SH 04: data. Accessed October 26, 2022. https://health.gov/healthypeople/objectives-and-data/browse-objectives/sleep/increase-proportion-high-school-students-who-get-enough-sleep-sh-04/data
Reference 3
Pyper E, Harrington D, Manson H. Do parents’ support behaviours predict whether or not their children get sufficient sleep? A cross-sectional study. BMC Public Health. 2017;17:432. doi: 10.1186/s12889-017-4334-4
Reference 4
Bartel KA, Gradisar M, Williamson P. Protective and risk factors for adolescent sleep: a meta-analytic review. Sleep Med Rev. 2015;21:72–85. doi: 10.1016/j.sleep.2016.07.007

Population
All adults.
Numerator
Adults who report usually getting insufficient sleep duration (<7 hours, on average, during a 24-hour period).1
Denominator
Adults who report 1–24 hours of sleep.
Measure
Prevalence (crude and age-adjusted).
Time Period of Case Definition
Average 24-hour period.
Summary
In 2020, 35% of United States adults reported insufficient sleep duration (<7 hours for those aged ≥18 years, on average, during a 24-hour period).2 Insufficient sleep duration is associated with an increased risk of a number of chronic conditions—such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, stroke, anxiety, and depression.1 Insufficient sleep duration can also cause motor vehicle crashes, industrial errors, and medical errors causing substantial injury and disability each year.1,3 Keeping a consistent sleep schedule, establishing a relaxing bedtime routine, and limiting bright light exposure in the evenings are some of the ways to improve sleep.4
Notes
Indicator does not convey variation in sleep duration (for instance, weekday vs. weekend sleep) or quality of sleep. Both might affect the risk for chronic disease. Indicator does not identify specific sleep problems, such as sleep disordered breathing, which are associated with different chronic conditions. Indicator is part of the rotating core and is administered in even years.
Data Source
Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS).
Related Objectives or Recommendations
Healthy People 2030 objective: SH-03. Increase the proportion of adults who get enough sleep duration.
Related CDI Topic Area
None.
Reference 1
Watson NF, Badr MS, Belenky G, et al. Recommended amount of sleep for a healthy adult: a joint consensus statement of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and Sleep Research Society. Sleep. 2015;38(6):843–844. doi: 10.5665/sleep.4716
Reference 2
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Sleep and sleep disorders. Data and statistics: Adults. Accessed October 26, 2022. https://www.cdc.gov/sleep/data-and-statistics/Adults.html
Reference 3
Institute of Medicine (US) Committee on Sleep Medicine and Research. Sleep Disorders and Sleep Deprivation: An Unmet Public Health Problem. Washington (DC): National Academies Press (US); 2006. PMID: 20669438
Reference 4
American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Sleep education. Healthy sleep habits. Accessed October 26, 2022. https://sleepeducation.org/healthy-sleep/healthy-sleep-habits/

Additional Data Sources