What Kind of Sleeper Are You?

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June 1, 2009

Can't Sleep

Do you ever look at the person driving the car next to yours or the person sitting on the subway next to you and wonder "what kind of sleeper is he/she?" Probably not. But what if you could determine even more about a person by knowing just a little about his/her sleep habits. Using data derived from the answers to the 2005 Sleep in America poll, the National Sleep Foundation found five clusters or "sleep personality" types. The commonalities are based on sleep habits and more than 40 other factors including age, marital status, gender, employment status, diagnosed medical conditions, how often they feel tired/fatigued/not up to par, and the amount of caffeinated beverages consumed daily. Personalities were grouped into the following:

  • Healthy, Lively Larks : You almost always get the sleep you need and you almost never feel tired or fatigued. You are younger than the other groups, often married or partnered and working full time. You consider yourself a morning person who is not diagnosed with a medical condition.
  • Sleep Savvy Seniors : You are the most mature of the five groups (average age 60), about half are 65 or older. As a sleep savvy senior, you get the most sleep of any group, averaging 7.3 hours/night compared to 6.8 overall. Although many Sleep Savvy Seniors have been diagnosed with at least one medical condition, you do not feel you have a sleep problem, and you are less likely than other groups to be at risk for any sleep disorder.
  • Dragging Duos : Dragging Duos are most likely to be partnered and employed, working more than 40 hours a week, and often doing job-related work within an hour of going to bed. As an early riser, you are nearly twice as likely as the other groups to get less sleep than you need to function at your best. More than one-third of Dragging Duos say they feel tired/fatigued at least three days each week.
  • Overworked, Overweight and Overcaffeinated : As an evening person or "owl" who is employed, you have the longest work week of all the groups,