As Europeans, we have many things in common. But is our sleeping habits one of them? JYSK Nordic set out to learn this and more with a big Sleep Survey performed among our customers across Europe.
Are you curious about your own sleep? Take our new Sleep Test and find your sleep score compared to people like you. You can also read more interesting findings here.
Goal: 8 hours of sleep
Respondents across all participating countries agree that their sleep quality is important to their life quality and that eight hours of sleep at night is optimal. When it comes to real life, however, most of them only sleep six to seven hours on week nights (62 %). Ukraine is the sleep champion in this respect, but even there, only one out of four sleeps eight hours or more a night. Average is 20 %.
At the other end of the scale, we find the Swedes who seem to suffer from the bright summer nights: Close to one out of 10 persons sleep only four hours or less. In Greece it might be the heat that causes close to one out of five persons to sleep only five hours a night.
At the weekend, we all try to catch up. Particularly in Norway, where almost one sleepyhead out of ten participants sleep 11-12 hours a day.
Falling asleep with ease – or the opposite
Speaking of Norway: Four out of ten respondents find it "difficult" or even "very difficult" to fall asleep. It makes you wonder how long they actually spend in bed in Norway – first tossing and turning, and then sleeping away half the day during the weekends. On average 25 % of all respondents have a hard time falling asleep.
In the Czech Republic half the respondents (52 %) have no problems falling asleep: They fall asleep "easily" or "very easily". Average is 45 %.
Across Europe, people use screen devices in bed before they sleep. Almost four out of ten (39 %) always use a screen device (smartphone, tablet, TV etc.) before sleeping. Record holder is Romania, where half the participants use a screen device before sleeping. In the other end of the scale, 20 % of the participating Danes never use a device at bedtime.
Read more about the impact of the blue light from electrical devices on your sleep quality.
Nighttime in Europe
What happens in the dark of night across Europe? Well, for one thing, we have company. Less than one third always sleeps alone. In Romania, one out of four has the company of their children every single night of a normal week. Average is 17 %.
Central, Eastern and Southern Europeans seems to be sounder asleep than Northern Europeans. 28 % don't wake up at all during the night, whereas only 18 % of the Danes, Swedes, Norwegians, Finns, Brits and Dutch experience a uninterrupted night's sleep.
Why do we wake up then? Surprising, maybe for new parents, children don't seem to be the main reason for sleep disturbances. Not even in Romania ... The primary reason is that we need to go to the toilet. Second most popular reason is the room temperature.
Sleeping position and personality
The fetal position is the most popular with sleeping on the stomach coming in second among the participants in general, but there are national differences. In Romania, Slovenia and Ukraine the image is reverse with more people preferring sleeping on the stomach than in the fetal position.
Is there an overweight of "communicative, extroverted, direct and sensitive people" among the JYSK customers in these countries? It would seem so, if you have a look at this description of personalities based on sleeping position.
Getting out of bed can be really tough
Maybe because of the lack of sleep during the week, close to four out of ten find it "difficult" or "very difficult" to get up in the morning. No participating country is as fresh in the morning as Ukraine. 46 % find it "easy" or "very easy" to get up. Average for all countries is 29 %. Maybe because more people reach the goal of 8 hours of sleep at night? Just across the border, in Poland, the picture changes. 50 % find it "difficult" or "very difficult" to get up in the morning.
How about the morning mood then? In Denmark, chances are that you see smiling faces on the metro and in the morning traffic, as the Danes are the overall happiest people with more than one out of three waking up "happy". 6,2 % are even "very happy" (average is 2,2 %). Go a little to the north and tread carefully. In Finland, more than one out of three wake up "grumpy" or even "very grumpy". The same pattern we see in Central Europe. More than a fourth wake up "happy" or "very happy" in Ukraine. Cross the border to Hungary and one out of three wake up "grumpy" or "very grumpy".
Siesta and drowsiness
In Greece they hold on to their Siesta as one out of four takes a nap every or most afternoons. On average across all other countries, the number is 10 %. Maybe those Norwegians should take a lesson from Greece: No other country feels so tired during the day: Close to two out of three "always" or "usually" experiences drowsiness on a daily basis, but only 10 % "always" or "usually" take a nap. At the other end of the scale, we find the Slovakians. 18 % never or rarely feel sleepy during the day.
About the survey
The survey was performed in all JYSK Nordic countries (Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Ukraine and United Kingdom). It was distributed in JYSK newsletters, blog posts and on Facebook and 35.000 people answered it.