Loss of 16 minutes of sleep can adversely affect human performance

Scientists from the University of South Florida have stated that disrupting sleep during the work week reduces productivity. According to their findings, 16 minutes, “taken away” from sleep in the evening, can negatively affect attention and concentration the next day, reports Naked science.

During the study, researchers interviewed 130 healthy employees who work in the field of IT and who have at least one child of school age. Participants reported that when they slept 16 minutes less than usual and had worse sleep quality, the next day they had more problems with work. Lack of sleep raised their level of stress, especially with regard to issues relating to the balance between work and personal life, with the result that they went to bed earlier and woke up earlier because of fatigue.

After additional research, the scientists found that waking up 19 minutes earlier than usual and going to bed 16 minutes later was associated with one additional point on the scale of cognitive interference the next day.

Read also: Skipping breakfast is fraught with the development of cardiovascular diseases

"These cyclical associations show that employee sleep is subject to daily cognitive stress, and also contributes to cognitive-stressful experiences. Our research provides empirical evidence of why employers should make more efforts to improve their employees' sleep. Sleepy employees can be more effective at work because of the greater ability to stay focused on a task with fewer errors and interpersonal conflicts, "say scientists.

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