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CDC report highlights the dangers of sleep deprivation

Most of us don't have to look any further than in the mirror at our own droopy eyes to know that the majority of Americans are struggling to get enough sleep. But often we forget that sleep deprivation is more than the driving force behind our caffeine addiction. Fatigue can also lead to daytime nodding off and dangerous situations.

Findings published today in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report show that an estimated 50-70 million adults in the United States suffer from chronic sleep disorders. The report also highlights some alarming statistics about the prevalence of people accidentally falling asleep during the day, including while behind the wheel of a vehicle. My Health News Daily reports:

Thirty-five percent reported getting fewer than seven hours of sleep on an average night, 48 percent reported snoring, 38 percent reported unintentionally falling asleep during the day sometime in the previous month, and nearly 5 percent said they'd nodded off while driving in the previous month.

The number of U.S. adults reporting that they get fewer than seven hours of sleep rose from 1985 to 2004, and that increase could be attributed to trends such as the increased use of technology and more people working night shifts, the CDC said.

The data is based on a survey of 74,571 adult respondents across 12 states.

Previously: Sleep deprivation more common in the U.S. than Europe
Photo by Jennifer Boriss

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