If you’re female, aged 45 to 54 and live in Wales then the chances are you’re among the UK’s worst sleepers.

That’s according to new data released by The Sleep Charity, which provides a candid insight into Brits’ relationship with sleep in 2021.

The data has been recorded from an online survey of 2,000 people conducted by OnePoll and delivered in partnership with Furniture Village, who the Charity recently teamed up to launch the UK’s first dedicated helpline for people who struggle to sleep.

Participants in the study were asked how many nights each month they experience a bad nights’ sleep, and top of the list by region was Wales, with 39 per cent of people saying they typically experience 12 or more bad nights’ sleep every month.

That’s more than double the number recorded in the East Midlands, which is home to the UK’s most consistent sound sleepers, where just 19 per cent reported the same issue.

Behind Wales, regions across the south of England occupy the remainder of the top five in the bad sleep stakes, while just 26 per cent of Scots and 22 per cent of Northern Irish residents say they experience 12 or more bad nights’ sleep a month, confirming them as sounder sleepers than the majority of the rest of the UK.

 RegionPer cent experiencing 12+ bad nights’ sleep a month
1Wales39 per cent
2East Anglia37 per cent
3West Midlands36 per cent
4London32 per cent
5South East31 per cent
=6North East30 per cent
=6North West30 per cent
=6Yorkshire & The Humber30 per cent
9South West29 per cent
10Scotland26 per cent
11Northern Ireland22 per cent
12East Midlands19 per cent

The data also reveals that women are 5 per cent more likely to experience poor sleep than men, with 33 per cent of female respondents experiencing 12 or more disrupted nights a month, compared to 28 per cent of men.

 GenderPer cent experiencing 12+ bad nights’ sleep a month
1Female33 per cent
2Male28 per cent

Age also appears to be a key factor in sleep, with older people generally experiencing problems nodding off more often than their younger counterparts.

More than a third (34 per cent) of 45-54-year-olds experience 12 or more bad nights’ sleep a month, closely followed by those of retirement age at 65 and older (33 per cent) followed by 33-54-year-olds (32 per cent).

The soundest sleepers are those aged 25-34 years old, with less than a quarter (24 per cent) reporting consistent issues with sleep.

 Age groupPer cent experiencing 12+ bad nights’ sleep a month
145-5434 per cent
265+33 per cent
335-5432 per cent
455-6430 per cent
518-2428 per cent
625-3424 per cent

Top of the list of symptoms reported by respondents who’ve experienced a bad nights’ sleep is a lack of motivation (49 per cent), followed by sore eyes (30 per cent), a reduced desire to see people (30 per cent) and aching joints (29 per cent).

28 per cent say they have felt less motivated to exercise, while nearly a quarter (24 per cent) have reported weight gain due to a lack of sleep.

 SymptomPer cent experiencing it
1Lack of motivation49 per cent
2Sore eyes30 per cent
3Reduced desire to see people29 per cent
4Aching joints29 per cent
5Reduced desire to exercise28 per cent
=6Mental health issues28 per cent
=6Eye strain24 per cent
8Weight gain24 per cent
9Reduced sex drive22 per cent
10Lack of appetite21 per cent
11Weight loss17 per cent
12Bad skin14 per cent
13Vomiting9 per cent

The Sleep Charity is the national charity empowering the nation to sleep better.

Sleep Charity deputy CEO Lisa Artis said: “This illuminating, fascinating data helps to paint an accurate and up-to-date picture of our nations’ evolving relationship with sleep.

“It is particularly interesting to note the differences between age, location and gender where sleep is concerned, and though there are other factors at play, such as family, career and overall health, the data serves as an invaluable resource to help inform our own strategic planning.

“The Sleep Charity exists to help the nation sleep better and we’re working harder than ever, with more partners than ever, to ensure our services and support are available to anybody who needs them.”

The National Sleep Helpline is operated by specialist, trained advisors between 7pm and 9pm five days a week, Sunday to Thursday.

The helpline number is 03303 530 541. Calls are charged at your standard network rate.

Further information – www.thesleepcharity.org.uk/help-is-just-a-phone-call-away