World Sleep Day – This is how the world sleeps

“Sleep is essential for health” – that is the theme of World Sleep Day 2023. But how well does the world actually sleep? We'll show you how sleeping habits differ in different countries and cultures around the world and in which places people sleep particularly restfully.

Table of Contents

  1. World Sleep Day – World Sleep Day
  2. This is how the world sleeps
    1. Sleep duration
    2. Sleeping times
    3. Sleep quality
  3. Sleep restfully anywhere in the world

1. World Sleep Day

Sleep is a fundamental part of our lives and has an important importance for health and daily well-being. World Sleep Day is an annual day of action launched by the World Sleep Society to raise awareness of sleep. This year the day of action was on the 17th. March under the theme “Sleep is essential for health”. We stand behind this motto 100% and are pleased that with smartsleep we can help support healthy sleep every day.

Because we all have to sleep, no matter how old we are, what gender we are or what country we live in. And depending on the living or cultural area we live in, there are also interesting differences in sleep behavior! We will now show you what differences and similarities there are when it comes to sleep in different regions of the world.

2. This is how the world sleeps

Sleep duration

Sleep experts generally recommend sleeping for 7 to 8 hours per night. How long we sleep can also depend on, among other things, our geographical location, the prevailing climate, cultural circumstances and social environment. The lighting conditions where we live or the professional and social structure of everyday life also have an influence on bed times and determine, for example, when we have to get up in the morning, go to work or go to school.

According to a study, the average global sleep duration in 2021 was 7 hours and 9 minutes - and the trend is falling! On average, women sleep about 15 minutes longer than men. The shortest sleep duration worldwide was observed in Indonesia, Japan and Malaysia. Here, on average, people only slept up to 6 hours 46 minutes per night. People in Belgium, the Netherlands and Ireland sleep the longest - on average approx. 7 hours and 30 minutes per night. In Germany, the average sleep duration is around 7 hours and 20 minutes, which is even higher than the global average.

Sleeping times

Our sleep-wake rhythm is based on the natural course of the day, so sunrise and sunset also have an influence on sleep behavior. In warmer countries there is often a longer rest period around midday, during which a short afternoon nap is also taken, for example during the traditional Spanish siesta. Researchers therefore suspect that the internal clock influences tiredness and the time when people go to bed in the evening depending on local circumstances, while the time they get up depends heavily on social obligations.

smartsleep Schlafmagazin Schlafzeiten und Schlafdauer weltweit

The earliest sleep and wake times were found in the USA, Belgium, Australia and Denmark. By global standards, people in Spain, Italy and Brazil go to bed relatively late and therefore get up a little later in the morning. Germany, France and Japan are in the middle range when it comes to sleep times. The average German goes to bed shortly after 11:15 p.m. and gets up between 7:00 and 7:15 a.m. the next day.

Sleep quality

A sufficiently long sleep does not always mean that the night is really restful. Nowadays we sleep significantly less than before and more and more people are suffering from serious sleep disorders. As we know, the quality of sleep depends not only on personal circumstances, but also on many external influences and for this reason it can vary in quality in different parts of the world.

The “City Sleep Index 2020” survey, for example, examined which cities around the world are the best to sleep in. In addition to common factors such as physical health, consumption behavior of caffeine, nicotine and alcohol, local circumstances such as the job and financial situation and environmental influences such as light, noise and Air pollution included. The result of the study: According to the study, Amsterdam, Auckland and Glasgow have the best sleep. The worst sleep, however, was measured in the major cities of Sao Paulo, Tokyo and Los Angeles. In Germany, Dresden and Munich performed best, taking 7th and 8th place in a global comparison.

3. Sleep well anywhere in the world

No matter where you come from and under what circumstances you live - the most important thing when it comes to sleep is to find out the right rhythm for your individual and to adapt to your own sleep needs. With good sleep hygiene we can definitely help to find sufficient and restful sleep -  even under difficult conditions, in hectic, noisy cities or when the alarm clock regularly goes off too early.

4. Conclusion

    • The motto of World Sleep Day in 2023 is “Sleep is essential for health”.
    • Sleeping habits differ in different parts of the world, particularly in sleep duration, sleep times and sleep quality.
    • Sleep behavior in Germany is in the good middle range. The best places to sleep are in the cities of Dresden and Munich.

    Greetings and see you soon!

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