Almost half of all Portuguese sleep badly, but only 19 per cent are aware of the problem, according to a new study. The enquiry, conducted by the magazine of the Association of the Defence of the Consumer, DECO, revealed that 47 per cent of Portuguese are not getting ‘a good night’s sleep’.
It also revealed that 56 per cent admit to suffering from tiredness during the day and, as a consequence, 21 per cent admit to the possibility of falling asleep at the wheel. Regarding the quality of sleep, 59 per cent of those asked admit they sleep less hours than they need and 16 per cent admit that, in the morning, they still feel tired. Among those who admit they sleep badly, 55 per cent point to stress and anxiety, while problems at work or with the family are cited as other reasons.
Most people who suffer from sleeping problems (60 per cent) see the family doctor and only 20 per cent seek help from a psychiatrist. The study also established that 16 per cent of those questioned admitted taking occasional medication to help them sleep.
As DECO views insomnia as a “real problem for public health”, the consumer association suggests that health and education ministries should promote information campaigns about the importance of sleep and the consequences of sleep deprivation, particularly for driving.