Does Our Income Or Occupation Affect Our Bedtime Habits?

We’re committed to ongoing research of the nation’s sleeping and bed buying habits so to kick start our Sleeptember season we’ve been looking into how household income and occupation affects our bedtime habits. And the results? Well it seems the less we earn, the less couples are likely to sleep together.

The feedback from our major survey into the nation’s sleeping habits found that a clear dividing line is a household income of £35K. Below that, just over three quarters (77%) of couples say they sleep together every night they are at home, whereas at least 82% of those earning over that amount share the same bed when they can. Out of those earning less than 25K, 12% said they never sleep with their spouse or partner. Among those not working at all the figure is 13%.

Is this because those who earn less are worrying over their finances in this tough economic climate and find themselves tossing and turning next to each other? Or is it simply they can’t justify spending what seems a lot of money on a new bed?

Did you also know that when it comes to the bed itself, those who earn the most – over £75K – are by far the most likely to have hung on to their beds for the longest? 23% of that income group have owned their bed for more than eight years – our recommended replacement cycle is every seven years – and only spent between £400 – £599 on their current bed. Astonishing!

Sales, media and marketing types are among the most likely to pay more for their bed with 13% paying between £1-2K. Those working in the legal profession are the most likely to splash out on a good bed with 18% saying they spent at least £1K for the bed they sleep in.

Some other fascinating facts that came out of the report include:

- Those who earn the most sleep the best. Among those earning over £75K, 83% said they slept very well or fairly well most nights (national average 73%). That compares to a third (33%) of those who do not work who said they sleep very poorly or quite poorly most nights.

- People working in legal professions are the most likely to get a good staple seven to eight hours sleep a night with almost a third (32%, national average 22%) saying they get that amount.

- Those in architecture/engineering/building get the least sleep with 72% of them saying they get less than seven hours a night. Interestingly, when it came to asking respondents what kept them awake at night, this was also the biggest group laying the blame on a daytime nap.

- High earners are the least likely to seek remedies to help them sleep: more than half (53%) of those bringing in over £75K say they have never taken remedies to help them sleep.

- The most likely people to reach for medication are those earning under £15K with a quarter (25%, national average 17%) doing so. This group is also the most likely to consult their GP/health visitor with 15% (national average 10%) having done so.

- By occupation, those working in HR are the biggest group (57%, national average 49%) to never take sleep remedies.

- Nearly a quarter (23%) of those working in sales, media, marketing, architecture, engineering and building turn to alcohol to help them sleep.

- Those earning over £75K are more likely than any other income group (17%, national average 12%) to use their laptop as the last thing they do before going to sleep.

What do you think to these figures? Are any of these you?

* The research for The Sleep Council was carried out online by Opinion Matters between 02/01/2013 and 23/01/2013 amongst a panel resulting in 5007 respondents (UK adults). All research conducted adheres to the MRS Codes of Conduct (2010) in the UK and ICC/ESOMAR World Research Guidelines. Opinion Matters is registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office and is fully compliant with the Data Protection Act (1998).

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