The latest Gallup poll shows a sharp decline in sleep duration, with significant stress increases reported, especially among women under age 50.


Summary: A new Gallup poll indicates that 57% of Americans feel they need more sleep, a reversal from 2013 figures when the majority felt they were getting enough sleep. Today, only a quarter report getting eight or more hours of sleep, while those getting less than five hours increased to 20%. Women, particularly under 50, report the greatest sleep deficiency. Stress levels parallel this decline, with 49% of Americans feeling stressed, rising to 53% among young women. This cycle of poor sleep and high stress suggests health implications.

Key Takeaways:

  • A new Gallup poll shows that most Americans, particularly young women, are experiencing a notable decrease in sleep and an increase in stress levels.
  • The poll found that only 36% of women reported getting enough sleep, compared to 48% of men. Young women under age 50 are particularly affected, as only 27% said they get the sleep they need, a decrease from 42% in 2001.
  • Nearly half of all Americans (49%) frequently experience significant stress, the highest figure reported by Gallup over three decades. Stress is most prevalent among young women, 53% of whom report frequent stress, marking an increase of 23 percentage points since 2007.

A new Gallup poll highlights a shift toward less sleep and higher stress levels among Americans—particularly among young women.

The poll reveals that the majority of Americans (57%) report that they would feel better with more sleep, contrasting with findings from Gallup’s poll in 2013 when a majority (56%) felt they were getting enough rest. 

Only a quarter of Americans today report sleeping eight hours or more (down from 59% in 1942), while the number sleeping less than five hours a night has increased to 20%, up from 3% in 1942, according to a Gallup article reporting on the findings.

Women under age 50 particularly report getting less sleep than needed compared to their male counterparts. The poll found that 36% of women feel they get enough sleep versus 48% of men. Among younger women, only 27% are satisfied with their sleep, which is less than half compared to the 54% of young women who reported being satisfied with their sleep in 2001.

Stress Is Rising as Sleep Is Declining

Stress levels have also risen alongside reductions in sleep. Nearly half of all Americans (49%) frequently experience significant stress, the highest rate ever noted by Gallup in this area. This increase is most acute among young women, 53% of whom report frequent stress—a rise of 23 points since 2007. Forty-five percent of men say they frequently experience stress. 

The poll underscores a vicious cycle: Those who sleep less tend to experience more stress, and vice versa, exacerbating both issues. The poll found that 63% of those who lack adequate sleep also experience high stress levels. 

According to Gallup, this relationship suggests implications for national health, as inadequate rest and high stress are linked to various psychological and physiological disorders.

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