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Trying to be awake early mornings or late evening hours: the benefits and harms of 24/7 society


In recent decades many people stay up late at night in an effort to handle several activities. However, "time optimization" in contemporary life can leads to insufficient sleep and impact physical and mental health.


To investigate the daily life including rest-activity and sleepiness in two working groups who study during early morning and late evening hours.


Cross-sectional study with mixed methods. The study was conducted in two educational institutions of São Paulo, Brazil (2013-2014). 1) Undergraduate college during early morning (5:30- 8:00 AM), 40 participants (67.5% female, aged 32 ±7.75) and 2) Public high school during evening hours (7:00-11:00 PM), 21 participants (33.3 % female, aged 17±1.05). They completed a socioeconomic questionnaire. During 7 consecutive days filled rest-activity diaries, including sleep times, KSS sleepiness scale and used wrist actigraphy. Comprehensive interview about daily life was also performed. Ethical approval for the study was granted by the School of Public Health Committee, USP.


Results: Participants reported concerns to meet demands of daily life. Their early morning and late evening hours was mandatory because of their working times. Rest-activity data demonstrated a significant difference among sleep time variables and daily sleepiness comparing weekdays and weekend. Participants reported embarrassment to nap during work breaks and at school hours. Therefore, they looked for inappropriate environments, as toilets, locker rooms, public transportation, for resting. Drugs consumption were also reported, in order to keep them awake. The mixed methods supported a wider vision of different factors that involve assessments of daily life, reasons of sleep debt and negative impacts on health.


Rest and working times are important health factors and should be openly discussed in order to prevent further harm in contemporary life, where productivity, alertness and great performance are appreciated and resting/sleep time are not valued.


shiftwork and working time, rest-activity cycle, contemporary life




Faculdade de Saúde Pública da Universidade de São Paulo - Sao Paulo - Brasil


Andrea Aparecida Luz , Debra Skene, Benita Middleton , Vitor Sergio Ferreira , Frida Marina Fischer