Sleep Deprived South Korea? New Study Shows The Country Had One Of The Lowest Average Sleeping Period During The Pandemic

Though Koreans got more sleep than usual during COVID, it still wasn’t enough.
On October 11, KST, Samsung released an intriguing study that revealed the sleep patterns of 10 million of its smartwatch users across 16 different countries from January 2018 to June 2021. According to the numbers, all users slept more once the COVID pandemic started, but the increase in sleeping time was the highest for South Korea.
Interestingly, despite the increase, the country’s total sleeping period turned out to be way low. On average, the increase in Korean people’s sleeping time came out to be 17 minutes a day. Argentina was next in rank, with a 16-minute daily increase, followed by Indonesia (13 minutes). But in terms of total sleeping time, South Korea was one of the last four countries. While France topped this list with a daily average sleeping period of 7 hours and 26 minutes, South Koreans only got approximately 6 hours and 41 minutes of sleep a day.

The study also revealed another parameter called sleep “efficiency,” which is measured by the ratio of the time spent actually sleeping versus the time spent in bed. Argentina was in the lead in this area with 88.55% sleep efficiency. South Korea’s sleep efficiency increased from 86.09% to 86.73% during the pandemic. Indonesia had the greatest improvement, going from 84.82% to 85.96%.

While there are many factors at play when it comes to sleep deprivation in South Korea, one of the major reasons is the work pressure and emotional exhaustion of a constantly competitive society. This phenomenon has given rise to a bustling sleep-aid industry in the country.

Buddhist temples run sleep retreats in South Korea |

From entire departmental stores dedicated to sleep products to apps and meditation rehabs, South Korea is grappling to get its lack of sleep under control. The study by Samsung has only highlighted an already familiar issue, which experts feel can only be solved through deep-rooted fundamental changes in the way the country operated at social and economic levels.

Source: Chosun Ilbo
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