Clinically reviewed by Dr. Chris Mosunic, PhD, RD, CDCES, MBA

More than 50–70 million adults suffer from a sleep disorder (e.g., insomnia or sleep apnea) [1, 2] and 60% of Americans report significant sleep disturbances (e.g., trouble falling or staying asleep, sleeping excessively, disturbed sleep-wake schedules, restless or insufficient sleep) [35]. Short-term effects of sleep disturbance are associated with decreased performance (e.g., job productivity, school performance), fatigue and daytime sleepiness, while longer-term effects may have more detrimental consequences such as premature mortality, risk of cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes, and psychiatric disorders (e.g., anxiety, depression) [1, 6, 7]. Those with sleep disturbance, particularly with insufficient sleep, are more likely to report being obese, physically inactive, and current smokers [8] and has been declared a major public health problem [1]. Additionally, up to 10% of adults reporting sleep disturbances have severe and chronic symptoms that meet diagnostic criteria for insomnia [9], with fatigue being one of the most frequent complaints [10]. There is an urgent need to identify strategies, which can be delivered broadly at the community level, to address sleep disturbance and improve health outcomes.

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