Who are the sleepiest Americans? Researchers map out fatigue

Southerners report the most sleep disturbances, daytime fatigue

February 24, 2012

Residents of Southern U.S. states experience the most sleep disturbances and daytime fatigue, according to a new "sleep map" that outlines how geography may influence sleeping patterns.

To create the state-by-state sleep map, University of Pennsylvania researchers used 2006 CDC survey data for 157,319 U.S. residents across 36 states.

The findings, published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, show that residents of Oklahoma, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, and West Virginia report the highest rates of daytime fatigue and sleep disturbances.

Meanwhile, residents of West Coast states reported the lowest rates.

The researchers say the findings are consistent with other geographic studies, noting that the states with the most fatigue also suffer higher rates of other health conditions, such as obesity.

"Sleep is such an important part of overall health," says study author Michael Grandner. "We should begin to use this data to track patterns of poor sleep and try to understand why these patterns occur" (Preidt, HealthDay, 2/23; Penn release, 2/23).

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