While companies are opening offices back up and businesses return to normal working hours, employees are trickling back into their pre-pandemic workflow. However, there are still a decent chunk of people who are working the hybrid model or still working from home completely. In fact, many of these positions will remain as the hybrid or work from home model long after the pandemic is over as employers embrace the new workflow and its pros. However, how does this affect sleep?
A 2020 Singaporean study followed people who returned fully to work and those who remained stay at home to observe their physical activity and sleep patterns. As it turns out, those who stay at home tend to sleep much later than those who returned to the workplace. Staying at home was also associated with increase pre-bedtime phone usage which has been shown to correlated with lower physical activity.
While the direct consequences of this is yet to reveal itself, previous studies have shown that later bedtimes can lead to negative health consequences likely due to lack of sleep. However, if people are able to wake later as well and preserve their sleep time, perhaps they will be spared. However, it is without a doubt that working from home does blur the lines of personal and professional time and this might bleed into employee’s ability to get complete and total rest. As time goes on, as with everything during the pandemic, we will learn more about how COVID has impacted sleep for hundreds of thousands of workers.
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