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Medicine Science Hardware Technology

New Study Finds How Much Sleep Fitbit Users Really Get 75

Fitbit has published the results of a study that uses their longitudinal sleep database to analyze millions of nights of Sleep Stages data to determine how age, gender, and duration affect sleep quality. (Sleep Stages is a relatively new Fitbit feature that "uses motion detection and heart rate variability to estimate the amount of time users spend awake in light, deep, and REM sleep each night.") Here are the findings: The average Fitbit user is in bed for 7 hours and 33 minutes but only gets 6 hours and 38 minutes of sleep. The remaining 55 minutes is spent restless or awake. That may seem like a lot, but it's actually pretty common. That said, 6 hours and 38 minutes is still shy of the 7+ hours the the CDC recommends adults get. For the second year in a row Fitbit data scientists found women get about 25 minutes more sleep on average each night compared to men. The percentage of time spent in each sleep stage was also similar -- until you factor in age. Fitbit data shows that men get a slightly higher percentage of deep sleep than women until around age 55 when women take the lead. Women win when it comes to REM, logging an average of 10 more minutes per night than men. Although women tend to average more REM than men over the course of their lifetime, the gap appears to widen around age 50.
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New Study Finds How Much Sleep Fitbit Users Really Get

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    I guess moms don't use Fitbit? Especially moms of young kids.

    • They are probably probably washed away in the averages.
      I wish the media would include Standard deviation in their repotting of percentages and averaged.
      Because because of the factors like child care it may have gave women a wider standard deviation.

    • No, they have other expenses to worry about than to squander money on feelgood trash.

    • Also, I guess that there are not many 70-80 year old people using it.
  • Sleeping it Away? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dcw3 ( 649211 ) on Friday June 30, 2017 @03:55AM (#54718105) Journal

    So, women are sleeping 25 minutes more per night, or the equivalent of 6.3 days per year. At the U.S. life expectancy of 81.6, they're sleeping about 517 days more than men over their lifetimes. With men only living 79.3 years, it almost makes up for the difference.

    • Could sleeping less be one of the reasons for men dying earlier than women?

      • This is very possible. Sleep studies done over the last few decades have proven that sleep deprivation results in a lot of health problems. From my own experience with a sleep disorder I can verify that it causes weight gain, long term high blood pressure, and an increased risk of stroke and heart attack.

        Over and above those issues even small amounts of sleep deprivation have a large effect on motor skills. Studies have shown that sleep deprivation affects driving skills as much as drinking does. Just l

  • by zephvark ( 1812804 ) on Friday June 30, 2017 @04:47AM (#54718181)

    This is all very interesting but, it's entirely from Fitbit data. Is there any information at all about how reliable this is? Are there similar studies that don't rely on cheap consumer devices?

    • There's also an inherent flaw in the fact that the sample is from the type of people that would wear a Fitbit.

      How much sleep do the people get who aren't worried about their health, can't afford one, or aren't interested in data? (Or also don't like wearing ugly devices on their wrist)

      Perhaps these people sleep much more soundly at night.

  • Take to the streets my brothers to close this REM gender gap!!!
  • by Anonymous Coward

    I have a Garmin watch and it has a feature to monitor sleep patterns and I can say for a fact that it is wildly inaccurate. It can be off by 2-3 hours. It also doesn't account for catnaps that occur during the day.

    • Why would you put a garmin watch on your cat and why would that affect your own sleep patterns?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 30, 2017 @08:17AM (#54718657)
    Men enjoy sex for 25 minutes on average while their partner is fast asleep.
  • I read the linked article, but it does not show the primary report, nor does it appear to have a link to it (if someone finds it, please help me out).

    There's an important issue within human experimentation, and this study most certainly falls within that rubric: if you plan on publishing the results of the study, it is considered human research, and there are a host of regulations and ethical standards that we, as a society, have agreed must be met. First, there needs to be oversight by an Institutional Re

    • So I read your statement, and i guess that makes sense.
      But what is the difference between human experimentation, and publishing censored data logs compiled into statistics?

    • Waiver of consent is permitted in certain instances under 45 CFR 46 (though the waiver must be approved by an IRB). See section (d) from Cornell's helpful guidance here --> https://www.law.cornell.edu/cf... [cornell.edu]

      -Your friendly neighborhood former IRB admin

  • "10 minutes more" is well below the one-late-night-per-week effect. This could be nothing more than men have one restless night each week. Or men stay up late one night each week. Or thunder wakes up men more than women.

    Or, of course, the men who use a fitbit don't sleep as much as the men who don't.

    Garbage bias, garbage average, meaningless conclusions.

  • My wife has one. One of her physicians told her that he wants to see how much she is sleeping, how many steps she is taking, etc.

    But this is a battery-operated device. And it needs to be charged. So I have to wonder whether or not this study held for users who were charging their FitBits all night, rather than allowing it to record their sleep patterns. I don't see the actual study on the link, just an executive summary.

    • by godrik ( 1287354 )

      When I was wearing a fitbit (I don't anymore, the battery died) I used to charge it when I was taking a shower. That pretty much cover the charging time that you need and disrupt very little the step count.

    • by judoguy ( 534886 )

      My wife has one. One of her physicians told her that he wants to see how much she is sleeping, how many steps she is taking, etc.

      What passes for doctors these days is pitiful.

      No matter the ailment, s/he'll just prescribe more statins and say exercise more. And if the device thinks she's sleeping too much or not enough, she'll get anti-depressants.

  • If I don't get my 8 hours in, I'm an absolute unproductive disaster at work the next day. How do a *majority* of US Americans survive with less than 7 hours of rest each night? I just don't understand it. I know a lot of people are addicted to coffee, which I can't stand personally, but can that really explain it? Or does my body just need more sleep than most people? (Not so, according to the CDC and loads of other studies.)

    I think one of the biggest problems in our society is people getting started i

  • Clearly men sleeping less is an important gender issue and I can't wait for all the social justice kids to start writing 8 articles a day about how women are clearly sexist and things need to change. After all, feminism and social justice isn't anti-male.

    And since "Air Conditioning is Sexist":

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/wom... [telegraph.co.uk]

    Why can't sleep be?

A committee is a group that keeps the minutes and loses hours. -- Milton Berle