It’s up there with the weather and what we’re having for lunch as one of the UK’s most common topics of conversation.
Our latest poll reveals that we talk about kip at least twice a day, for around five minutes each time. This adds up to nearly 4 days a year! And if we live to the UK’s average age of 81, that means 236 days of our lives talking about sleep!
The most common reason is how little we’re getting, what keeps us up at night, family bedtimes, how tired we’re feeling and even the habits of our sleeping partners.
We know from our previous research that 56% of us aren’t satisfied with the amount of sleep we get, with a third saying it’s our partner that disturbs sleep with snoring most nights.
So we love to talk about sleep. But it does depend how old, or where you’re at in life, as to the kind of ‘sleep talk’ you’ll be making. We’ve spotted four very different types, but we’d love to know….what kind of ‘sleep talker’ are you?
1. Sleep Hackers
It’s all about stamina with this party animal. How little sleep they can get away with and who they’re going to tell. There’s the constant FOMO (fear of missing out) and so who can stay awake the longest, party the hardest or study through the night get the biggest kudos from their mates.
2. Sleep Walkers
The birth of a new baby is reason for joyful celebration of life, but also a dark world of 4am stumbles to the kitchen for fresh bottles and endless pacing of the nursery floor. As a search term on mumsnet.com ‘sleep’ gets 384,000 results. There are now ‘baby whisperers’, clocks that count down to bedtime, debates as to swaddle or not to swaddle, co-sleeping, whether to use a dummy, the list is endless. Ironically babies get plenty of sleep; in newborns it’s generally 14 to 16 hours a day. It’s the parents who are missing out, and spend the most amount of time talking about sleep than any other group.
3. Blue Light Brigade
Multi-tasking worker bees who are always plugged in and just too busy for sleep. They love to let their team mates and boss know that they’ve been burning the midnight oil on that month end report. But, the blue light emitted from devices like phones and laptops has been linked to reducing sleep quality. 40% of people admitted that their electronic device was the last they put down before going to sleep.
4. Naptime Stealers
Over the age of 55 and sleeping once more becomes a hot topic. Falling asleep on the sofa after dinner, and then waking at 3am. How loud their partner is snoring and whether it’s time to get separate beds. Aching joints, night sweats and worries are all things that keep the sleep conversations flowing. 86% of people questioned in this age group said they placed sleep above food and holidays as being the most important to them.