The Week in Sleep News: March 17, 2023

Good news! Better sleep leads to a better quality of life. Meanwhile Jamie Lee Curtis leads the charge for earlier concerts to get to sleep sooner.

Two people reading newspapers in bed. Text reads: Sleep News, Week of March 17, 2023

This week in sleep news:

Sleep quality is associated with quality of life over time

There are many studies that link sleep quality to your overall quality of life; however, there’s little research on the impact of changes in sleep duration, quality, and timing on an individual’s quality of life long term. Researchers looked at data of five quality-of-life measures (life satisfaction, well-being, happiness, subjective health, and work stress) over the course of three years, 2018 to 2020. The results year over year on an individual level showed that sleep quality was significantly correlated with all five quality-of-life measures except work stress. Sleep quality was also significantly positively correlated with all quality-of-life measures when comparing among people.

When comparing the data among participants, sleep duration was significantly correlated with subjective health and happiness, and social jetlag was significantly correlated with life satisfaction and work stress. These results suggest that sleep duration or timing may not be as important to quality of life as high-quality sleep.

Sleep affects your immunity after vaccination

A new study, published Monday in Current Biology, analyzed existing research on sleep and immune function after vaccination against influenza A as well as hepatitis A and B. They found that insufficient sleep (less than six hours a night) around vaccination reduces the antibody response. These findings suggest that achieving adequate amount of sleep during the days surrounding vaccination may enhance and prolong the immunity response. Scientists say further large-scale, well-controlled studies are needed to define the window of time around inoculation when optimizing sleep duration is most beneficial and the amount of sleep needed to protect the response.

Genetics of night owls protect night-shift workers from sleep loss

Are you a night owl? You might be genetically better suited for night-shift work, a new study published in Sleep finds. Researchers looked at 53,211 workers between 2006 and 2018 to investigate if they had a genetic propensity to “eveningness.” The study found that night work was associated with many significant disadvantages to sleep; the largest impacts were seen in individuals who always work nights. Those who are regular night-shift workers saw 13 minutes less sleep a night compared to those who never work night hours. However, this research shows having a higher genetic propensity to “eveningness” reduced this sleep penalty by up to 28%. Lead senior author Melinda Mills said, “There are health implications for night-shift workers, but our study shows that these vary between individuals dependent on their chronotype, and that should be considered when designing interventions.”

In fun sleep news...

We hereby nominate Jamie Lee Curtis global social jetlag obliterator. In the run-up to her win for supporting actress at Sunday’s Academy Awards, Curtis was an outspoken advocate of bedtime. Speaking about declining a 7:30 p.m. dinner for fellow nominees, Curtis was protective of her sleep, saying, “Why? Because Mommy goes to bed early.” Furthering the commitment, she explained that a 7:30 dinner often extends until nine, saying, “There’s nothing good happening with me after nine o’clock.”

Curtis then doubled down, challenging famous musicians and bands, including Coldplay, U2, and Bruce Springsteen, to hold concert matinees. “I will come and hear your five-hour concert, Bruce, at two o’clock, and I’m gonna be home and in bed by 7:30,” she offered.

In sleep-centric social media...

We’re with Kristin! Sleep divorces shouldn’t be looked at as a sign for trouble in a relationship, but rather as a healthy way to maintain your and your partner’s sleep hygiene.

Tweet reads: we need to normalize sleeping in separate rooms for sleep quality reasons, and stop always treating it as a referendum on commitment
Twitter / Kristin Chirico