Here's how much sleep the average American is getting each night

FILE-A man sleeps peacefully in a bed. (Photo by Education Images/UIG via Getty images)

There’s no doubt that quality sleep has a lot of benefits, not only for your health, but also for your mood.

But a recent Gallup poll finds that people are not getting nearly the amount of sleep they should with 57% of Americans saying they would feel better if they could get more sleep and 42% offering that they get as much sleep as they require, a first in Gallup polling since 2021. 

To gather these results, Gallup conducted a poll between Dec. 1-20, 2023.

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The poll reveals that only 26% of people said they get eight hours of sleep compared to 53% of respondents saying they get six to seven hours of sleep while 20% share they only get five or fewer hours of sleep per night, a slight increase from 14% of people who reported getting less rest in 2013.

Gallup also noted that women are getting less sleep compared to men. Approximately 36% of women say they get sufficient rest, while 48% of men say they get enough sleep. 

Younger women, under the age of 50, were especially likely to report they weren't getting enough rest. The poll noted that adults 65 and older are more likely than younger groups to get the sleep they need.

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While the poll doesn’t offer specific reasons why Americans aren’t getting more sleep, one factor discussed is whether there is a connection between stress, adequate sleep, and overall health. In 2023, 53% of women reported routinely experiencing stress, compared to 45% of men.

Citing the American Psychological Association, Gallup reported that individuals getting sleep less are more stressed, and those who are more stressed aren't sleeping as much as they should. 

This poll reveals that 63% of people reporting wanting more sleep admit that they frequently experience stress, compared with 31% of those who get the sleep they need.

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The most recent data shows that 49% of Americans say they routinely experience stress, up 16 points over the past two decades and the highest in Gallup’s polling to date. 

Separately, younger women are the most likely of the four major gender-by-age groups to say they frequently experience stress, a higher rate compared to men their age, and they are also more likely than women 50 and older to report frequent stress.

Since the poll only shows a broad shift over the past 10 years, living through the COVID-19 pandemic might have affected a person's sleep patterns. Also discussed in post-COVID life is "revenge bedtime procrastination," in which people put off sleeping and instead scroll on social media or binge a show as a way of trying to handle stress, according to the Associated Press. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.  This story was reported from Washington, D.C.