Last reviewed on 12 October 2021
Around a third of adults are thought to have trouble sleeping. In fact, sleep problems are one of the most common psychological reasons for GP appointments and, left untreated, insomnia increases the risk of development or worsening of anxiety, depression, hypertension and diabetes.
Add the stress of COVID-19 and even more people appear to be struggling with sleep. A 2020 survey by King's College London/Ipsos MORI found that almost two-thirds (63%) of people in the UK said their sleep was worse than usual during the pandemic. A separate study by Southampton University found that mothers, key workers and BAME groups experienced a particular increase in sleep problems.
As Professor Bobby Duffy of KCL comments, these sleep problems are, "... tied to both how stressful we’ve found the virus itself and how much we fear the impact of the lockdown on our employment and finances."
Research has shown that being helped to sleep better really helps to reduce stress so here’s our advice for getting a better night’s sleep.
Three reasons to put sleep first
Three things that can help
If you’re struggling to get to sleep or waking up a lot because you’re worried about coronavirus, we hope these tips help you. This is an extremely difficult time for everyone but it’s vital that you get the right amount of rest to help you stay healthy in both mind and body.
Listen to our podcast with NHS sleep consultant Michael Farquhar and take a look at these information sheets about sleep and insomnia from the Centre for Clinical Interventions.
Take our simple quiz to get access to NHS-approved wellbeing apps