Work stress causing sleeplessness for a quarter of UAE residents

Author: PM editorial | Date: 15 Mar 2017

Survey highlights the importance of a good night’s sleep on productivity at work

Stress at work is causing a lack of sleep for a quarter of UAE residents, according to a new survey by health insurance provider Bupa Global.
 
And nearly a third (30 per cent) of respondents said that Saturday night, before going back to work on Sunday, was when they got the worst night’s sleep.
 
Many adults experience difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep, as well as frequent waking, early morning waking and difficulty getting back to sleep, said Dr Fiona McAndrew, general practitioner at Bupa’s Cromwell Hospital in London.
 
According to the study, only 12 per cent of UAE residents say they get eight or more hours sleep each night, with 76 per cent sleeping for between five and eight hours and 13 per cent managing less than five hours.
 
The study points out that those who don’t sleep well can find tasks at work more difficult; lack of sleep can cause memory and attention problems, as well as a more obvious lack of energy and general fatigue hampering productivity. They may also be more susceptible to work accidents.
 
Checking your email right before you go to bed is directly linked to taking longer to get to sleep, say experts, but a lot of people find it difficult to switch off completely at home. Steve Clements, director of health and group benefits at Willis Towers Watson, believes 21st century connectivity is not always a good thing.
 
“From the employee perspective, stress is caused by the constant on-call environment that they work in, [followed by low] salary,” he said in an interview with People Management. “For the employers, it is the lack of work-life balance, inadequate staffing and the presence of technologies that expand the day.”
 
While the BUPA study found that work stress was the biggest factor behind a lack of sleep, research carried out by jobs portal Bayt.com last year found that low salaries were the main cause of the stress that is, in turn, causing sleep problems.