40% of Police Officers Suffer Sleep Disorders: New Harvard Studythecrimereport.org
A serious lack of sleep may be a big problem among the nation's 700,000 police officers, reports NPR. In what's believed to be the first study on the subject, Harvard researchers queried nearly 5,000 municipal and state police officers in the U.S. and Canada about their sleep habits and symptoms of possible sleep disorders, and assessed their on-duty performance for two years.
Forty percent had sleep disorders, and the vast majority were undiagnosed before. Those who screened positive for a sleep disorder had a 25 percent higher risk of expressing uncontrolled anger to a suspect or citizen, and a 35 percent higher chance of having a citizen complaint filed against them. Sleep-deprived officers had 51 percent greater odds of falling asleep while driving on duty. One in three officers has sleep apnea – waking up repeatedly because breathing has temporarily stopped. That's at least 8 times higher than the rate among the general population. Sleep-starved officers reported falling asleep at meetings more often and calling in sick. The study appears in the Journal of the American Medical Association.