Is the Stresses of Everyday Life the Major Cause of a Bad Night’s Sleep?

Is the Stresses of Everyday Life the Major Cause of a Bad Night's Sleep?

It’s pretty much a certainty that someone you interact with today will have had a bad night’s sleep. As tired as many of us feel, sometimes getting a good night’s sleep can be nigh impossible. A new YouGov study has found that more than 50% of British adults blame poor sleep on the everyday stresses of life, and it also discovered that 1 in 6 women are getting by on just five hours of sleep a night.

A new YouGov study commissioned by Danish home retailer and sleep experts JYSK has revealed the latest insights into the bedtime habits of UK adults. From how much (or little!) we sleep, whether we prefer the comfort of pyjamas or going nude, to how often we wash our bed sheets, the survey offers a glimpse into how the pandemic and other factors have impacted our sleep quality.

Scandinavian sleep experts, JYSK, are on a mission to get the UK’s sleep back on track and invite a sense of Scandi hygge cosiness into our bedrooms with its range of science-led sleep and bedding products to bring us a better night’s sleep. Voted the second happiest country in the world in the UN-sponsored World Happiness Report 2021, Denmark is clearly in the know when it comes to understanding what is deep-rooted within our happiness and the impact factors such as good quality, restful sleep can have on our mental wellbeing and day-to-day lives. In comparison, the UK ranked 17th this year, falling from its previous position of 13th place.

A young woman asleep in her bed

1 in 6 women (16%) are surviving on up to just 5 hours of sleep a night
There’s nothing most of us look forward to more than hitting the hay after a long day but when it comes down to it, are we doing enough of the right things to prioritise our sleep?

According to JYSK’s latest investigation into our sleep routines, two in five UK adults (42%) are sleeping up to 6 hours per night and so aren’t getting the recommended number of hours of sleep, which is seven to eight hours per night, according to sleep experts at The Sleep Charity.

In fact, one in six women survives on up to just five hours of sleep a night, increasing to 20% in women over the age of 55.

The Sleep Charity’s Deputy CEO, Lisa Artis, with whom JYSK have partnered on an upcoming Sleep Roadshow event to bring professional sleep expertise to JYSK’s shoppers, said, “Sleep, regardless of age, is essential for a healthy lifestyle and should not be taken lightly. Just one night of interrupted sleep negatively affects mood, attention span and cognitive ability. We spend a lot of time focusing on exercising and eating well, but we miss sleep out of the equation. In today’s busy lifestyles, we’re all very eager to believe that sleeping one hour less will give us one more hour of productivity but, it’s likely to have the opposite effect.

There are around 200,000 working days lost to sleep deprivation in the UK every year. On top of that, tiredness can impact driving ability, reaction times and judgement. We need to take steps to ensure the nation sleeps better, which will make a transformational difference to their lives and wellbeing. A greater understanding of sleep will ensure a healthier society, supporting better mental, physical and emotional wellbeing and will ultimately save costs in the health sector, education and the workplace.”

The YouGov report also investigates which factors are having the biggest impact on our sleep, and life stress comes up trumps as the most common cause of a bad night’s sleep, affecting 54% of those surveyed. Women are particularly affected, with 59% pinning an unsettled night on life stress. Similarly, half of the full-time workers in the UK (52%) are kept up at night with thoughts and worries around work stress.

Also ranking highly amongst those surveyed as a cause of poor sleep were temperature (48%) and physical discomfort (36%). In particular, 1 in 5 Londoners’ mattresses are giving them a bad night’s sleep, and a quarter (27%) of those aged 18-24 complain of poor mattress quality impacting their sleep, which is significantly higher than any other age group.

Jakob Leth, JYSK Category Manager for Mattresses, explains that with more investment into the right tools for our sleep, many of our sleep issues could be simply eradicated. “Physical discomfort – whether that be from uncomfortable temperatures or poor quality, unsupportive bedding and mattresses – can all easily be improved or alleviated when we spend a little more time and investment into our sleeping setup.

Investments can be as small as adjusting the tog on your duvet or switching up your pillows to more permanent solutions, such as upgrading your mattress for one with memory foam and cooling gel technology that will precisely adapt to the contours of your shape and body. Whilst these may be simple switches, they can have a real benefit on improving the quality and quantity of our sleep, and therefore impacting how we feel in ourselves on a day-to-day basis”.

It’s unsurprising really that so many UK adults battle with sleep issues when so many of us aren’t investing enough in our sleep. A quarter (26%) of the population spends nothing on sleep products (such as new bedding or sleep aides) in the average year. Despite this, results from the study show that as a nation, we are willing to invest in finding the right products for our sleep, with comfort and quality ruling over price when it comes to shopping for a new mattress.

JYSK’s Scandinavian expert-backed sleeping and bedding products are both stylish and affordably priced, meaning that everyone can have the opportunity to invest a little more in their sleep, in a step towards achieving improved physical and emotional health and wellbeing.

Expert help on hand in all of JYSK’s 24 UK stores also means that shoppers will be guaranteed to find the right products they need for a better night’s sleep.

Has COVID wreaked havoc with our sleep?
COVID-19 and the consequences of the worldwide and ongoing pandemic have crept into every aspect of our lives. Anxiety around the virus, distance from loved ones, financial and health worries, and blurred barriers between work and home life will have touched us all at some point in the last eighteen months. And when it comes to sleep, JYSK’s latest data shows that COVID has left its trail here too.

Three in ten (30%) have seen their sleep worsen since the onset of the pandemic in March 2020. Almost a quarter of us are getting more anxiety whilst sleeping (22%). A total of 34% of people have admitted to their sleep being impacted by increased anxiety (22%) or more intense or unpleasant dreams (18%).

Whilst the uncertainty, loss, change of routine and long period of lockdown restrictions have taken its toll on many of our sleep routines, the data shows that those living in Northern Ireland have been the most affected region, with 40% of people getting less sleep or less restful sleep since the start of the pandemic, with 37% feeling more anxious.

Young people between 18-24 have also been hard hit by the impact of the pandemic on their sleep, with just over a third (35%) getting increased anxiety at night-time. In stark contrast, 75% of those aged 55 and over reported having no increased anxiety or unpleasant dreams at all (compared to 66% overall).

A woman having a good nights sleep alone in her bed

The great bedtime debates
Further data also sheds some eye-opening insights into what makes us tick when it comes to our bedtime routines.

  • Sleeping alone, or with a partner, and perhaps a pet too?
  • Sleeping in the nude, or wearing underwear or nightwear?
  • Are we washing our bed sheets enough, and how long is too long before your mattress needs to go?

The new report details that whilst the majority (54%) of us share our bed with a partner, one in ten (9%) are also joined by their canine or feline friends at night too. Women are much more open to the idea, with 13% welcoming their pets under the sheets compared to just 5% of men.

Thankfully though, many of us are on top of keeping our bed sheets clean, with 42% changing their bedding once a week or more often, with a further 39% every two to three weeks.

The same can’t necessarily be said for our mattresses, however, as almost one in five (18%) admit they’ve had the same mattress for more than eight years, which is longer than the recommended seven to eight years advised by the National Bed Federation for standard mattresses used every night.

And finally, do as many of us sleep in the nude as we think? Apparently not, it may seem, as just 23% of us choose to sleep in the nude whilst the large majority (49%) prefer wearing some form of nightwear.

From 30th September to 6th October, JYSK is offering a nationwide in-store and online promotion across its sleeping products to get Britain sleeping better. Offers can be found across bed frames and divans, pillows, mattresses, duvets and bedding sets, plus home accessories to help create the perfect night’s sleep. Visit to browse the collection.

In addition to this, JYSK will be collaborating with The Sleep Charity for an exclusive weekend Sleep Roadshow event on 6th and 7th November 2021. They will be bringing The Sleep Charity’s accredited sleep experts into selected JYSK stores around the country as part of its mission to educate the nation on how to achieve better quality sleep.

Read more health features and guides here.

Is the Stresses of Everyday Life the Major Cause of a Bad Night's Sleep? 2


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