Sleep Duration and Mortality Risk: Do Social Factors Moderate the Relationship?

Jennifer A. Ailshire, University of Michigan

Extant research shows that sleep duration is associated with mortality, but prior studies have not examined comprehensively how the association may vary by sex, race, or socioeconomic status (SES). We use data from the National Health Interview Study, a large, nationally-representative sample with a twelve year period of mortality follow-up, and Cox proportional hazard models of mortality risk to explore how social factors may mediate or moderate the sleep duration –mortality association. Preliminary results show that the relationship between short sleep duration and subsequent mortality is explained more by differences in health status than by social factors. By contrast, long sleepers have higher mortality due to their social and health characteristics, but an unexplained disadvantage in mortality risk still remains even with these controls. Findings also suggest that the sleep duration-mortality relationship is similar across social groups, though educational differences in the association are apparent among men but not women.

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Presented in Poster Session 5