According to a recent report issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, single parents are some of the most sleep deprived population group in America. CDC researchers found that nearly half of single moms are affected by sleep deprivation.
The report shows that 44 percent of single moms that live under the same roof with children under the age 18 reported not sleeping at least 7 hours per night as they should be.
Single dads were more fortunate. Just 38 percent said that they may be sleep deprived. But some single parents reported other sleep disorders including insomnia, and a few said that the problems were so serious that they had to resort to medication.
By contrast, just 33 percent of the parents who raised their kids in a traditional family had troubles to get the recommended 7 hours of sleep at night. CDC investigators noted that sleep deprivation in single parents should be regarded as a public health problem and solved accordingly.
Sleep deprivation has often been linked with a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and depression. A few studies even found a link between sleep deprivation and an elevated risk of cancer, while others underscored an association between sleep disorders and a high risk of being involved in workplace accidents and traffic collisions.
Dr. Stuart Quan, a sleep expert from the Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston who was not involved in the recent survey, said that the findings were no surprise. He noted that single parents need to meet more demands when it comes to raising their kids than two-parent families.
Quan added that these parents struggle to find a balance between work, children and social obligations at the expense of their nighttime sleep.
The CDC research involved 44,000 parents who took part in the National Health Interview Survey between 2013 and 2014. The report also show that women in general are at a higher risk of sleep deprivation than men, regardless of their status – single moms, members of traditional families with kids or women without children.
Moreover, 57 percent of single mothers and 46 percent of women that raise their kids along with a life-partner reported that the sometimes feel that they do not get enough sleep although they sleep at least 7 hours per night as recommended.
Quan said that other studies also found that women are more prone to develop sleep desorders than men and the problems are visible ever since their early years.