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Study: Finnish residents getting less sleep

One of the most wide-reaching sleep studies ever carried out in Finland finds that Finns are getting less than 7 hours a night of sleep -- an hour less than in previous studies. About 16,000 people participated in the survey which was carried out by Yle's Prisma Studio and the University of Helsinki. The growing sleep deficit is a threat to public health.

nainen katselee puhelinta vuoteessa
Image: Lenni Kuivalainen / Yle

Six hours and 55 minutes. That's the average amount of sleep per night that Finnish residents get, and it's a whole hour less than in previous years. It also means there are a lot of tired people at sitting at breakfast tables around Finland.

Heini Hautamäki is one of those people.

Hautamäki says she has difficulties falling asleep and sleeping soundly. She knows exactly what she should do to ensure a good night's sleep: no more watching TV in the evening, eating late at night, or using her mobile device in bed. But that doesn't always happen.

According to a survey carried out by Yle's Prisma Studio and the University of Helsinki, fatigue affects women more than men, and city-dwellers more than rural residents.

Long-term lack of sleep affects health

According to Anne Huutoniemi, who heads the Vitalmed research centre, a lack of sleep affects health by increasing inflammation values and blood glucose levels. The risk of Type 2 diabetes increases, as does cortical thinning, which can lead to dementia.

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