Climate change could steal our sleep: study

Climate change has the potential to cause sleep deprivation.—Pixabay/Cottonbro 
  • Warmer temperatures increase risk of insufficient sleep.
  • By year 2099, temperatures likely to steal up to 58 hours of sleep per person.
  • Study says elderly and females most likely to be affected.

A new study claims that climate change has the potential to cause sleep deprivation.

A research article named “Rising temperatures erode human sleep globally” published in One Earth studied data from sleep trackers worn by 47,628 anonymous people across 68 countries over a two-year period — September 2015 through October 2017.

The study predicted that by the year 2099, rising temperatures are likely to steal 50 to 58 hours of sleep per person per year.

For lower-income countries like India and Pakistan, the risks of temperature effects on sleep loss are significantly higher. The study also says that the elderly and females are most likely to be affected.

During the hot nights in the future, people will sleep late and rise early, which will result in “several adverse physical and mental outcomes.”

To fall asleep, our body temperature needs to drop which will become harder with the world becoming warmer. 

The author of the study, Kelton Minor, said that our lives depend upon “maintaining a stable core body temperature.”

“Yet each night our bodies do something remarkable without most of us  knowing: they shed heat from our core into the surrounding environment by dilating blood vessels and increasing blood flow to our hands and feet.”

Therefore, the surroundings of our bodies need to be cooler than us, Minor explained. 

While there were some limitations to the study, Minor said that “in this study, we provide the first planetary-scale evidence that warmer-than-average temperatures erode human sleep.”

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