Royal Philips announced the findings from its 5th annual sleep survey in a report, “Wake Up Call: Global Sleep Satisfaction Trends.” Philips surveyed more than 13,000 adults in 13 countries to capture attitudes, perceptions, and behaviors around sleep. This year’s results show global sleep satisfaction remains low with worry/stress, relationships, and cell phone use reported as key sleep inhibitors.

Worry and Stress Continue to Affect a Good Night’s Sleep

Only 49% of people are satisfied with their sleep, with worry/stress reported as the most limiting factor to a good night’s sleep (33%). Interestingly, fewer people in 2020 are taking action to improve sleep compared to 2019, with nearly all listed strategies to improve sleep lower or consistent in 2020 when compared to 2019 results. For example, reading before bed was the most popular strategy used to improve sleep in 2019 (39%), but only 28% of people report reading to improve sleep in 2020. Other notable distinctions in sleep-related behavior appeared across age and gender differences.

“The decrease in people taking action to improve sleep is alarming, especially when it is clear people around the world deeply value sleep. Sleep deficit impacts people both mentally and physically, so we need to educate people on available sleep resources and empower them with the confidence that their efforts will pay off,” says Mark Aloia, PhD, global lead for behavior change, sleep & respiratory Care at Philips, in a release. “As we head into the next decade, Philips is focused on designing a future where technology leveraged across the entire sleep ecosystem can help people get the most out of their lives.”

Sleep Issues Coming Between Bed Partners

Factors putting quality sleep at risk stem from both social and technology distractions. When it comes to relationships, 36% of people with a partner/spouse agree they sometimes sleep separately from their partner/spouse to improve their sleep, and 30% agree their or their partner/spouse’s difficulty sleeping is impacting their relationship. Despite experts’ recommendations to the contrary, almost 4-in-10 report using their phones right before falling asleep (39%) or as soon as they wake up (39%).

While external factors can be altered to improve sleep, some sleep conditions are outside of a person’s control. This year, respondents report lower rates of insomnia, snoring, shift work disorder, and chronic pain, but sleep apnea remains consistent (2019: 10% vs. 2020: 9%). Of those reporting to have sleep apnea, 51% said their sleep apnea is impacting their relationship(s). Yet, 48% of people with sleep apnea said they felt getting good sleep was out of their control—even though a variety of solutions exist to treat it.

The desire for help is there, as 60% of people agree they are interested in new information or strategies to help them get better sleep. Watching TV remains the most common strategy people use to improve their sleep (2019: 37% vs. 2020: 33%), and new data this year shows 15% have tried or currently use either marijuana or CBD oil to better their sleep.