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Here we go again – another industry-funded Sleep Awareness Week

Don’t let the special interest campaign catch you napping!

Dozens upon dozens of stories about Americans lacking sleep are popping up from news organizations all over the country this week, driven by another of the National Sleep Awareness Week campaigns of the National Sleep Foundation.

Few – if any – of these stories will tell you that it is industry special interests – sleeping pill makers, sleep labs, mattress makers – who are paying for this campaign. They do it every year. And news organizations fall into line like sheep and report the “new” findings every year.

Examples:

USA Today reports:

U.S. workers are silently suffering from a dramatic lack of sleep, costing companies billions of dollars in lost productivity, says a study out Monday.

Nearly three in 10 workers have become very sleepy, or even fallen asleep, at work in the past month, according to a first-ever study on sleep and the workplace by the non-profit National Sleep Foundation. The late-2007 survey was based on a random sample of 1,000 workers.

AP reports:

Hey you! Dozing at your desk! Wake up, go home and get more sleep! That could be the message from a survey released Monday by the National Sleep Foundation. The survey of 1,000 people found participants average six hours and 40 minutes of sleep a night on weeknights, even though they estimated they’d need roughly another 40 minutes of sleep to be at their best.

CNN, WebMD, UPI, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and many, many more news organizations are reporting the same stuff – handed to them by the industry-funded campaign.

Yawn.

Wake me when the next disease-mongering campaign comes around.

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Comments

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Bodybuilding Supplements

March 4, 2008 at 6:54 pm

What a big shock here.. Do they really think we are that dumb?? I bet some people read these reports and think “I have been feeling rather sleepy lately, maybe its time for a new mattress or some sleeping pills.”

Jesse Maple

March 6, 2008 at 7:08 pm

The CDC sent out a press release in late February that contains some really…eye opening information.
“The causes of sleep loss could include busy schedules or shift work; irregular sleep schedules; or lifestyle factors such as heavy family demands, late-night television watching and Internet use, or the use of caffeine and alcohol, according to a 2006 Institute of Medicine report.”
Who would’ve thought, sometimes the daily stresses of being human can affect the way you sleep sometimes. Everyone go ask their doctor about what medication to take!
The report even sends a shout-out to the Sleep Foundation and Sleep Awareness Week.
CDC involvement with Big Pharma? That’s a scary notion.
Thanks for the post Prof. Schwitzer, always nice to have a heads up on these things.