How are West Virginians Sleeping? A look at sleep quality in Apalachia

Sleep Problems


Sleeping is a very essential part of our health. when our sleep is disturbed, it can lead a various physiological and psychological disorders.  According to the Centre of Disease Control (CDC), West Virginia is the most sleep-deprived state in the US.  In a 2008 poll conducted on residents of all the US states, west Virginia scored 38.6% of the percentage of residents that had insufficient sleep in a month.

Analysis on how west Virginians are sleeping and a look at the sleep quality in Appalachia:

  • A study showed that west virginians lack of sleep doubled due to health problems like obesity
  • It was also found that the number of health problems and poor medical facilities were high in west Virginia than any other state.
  • It was suggested that 1 in 5 people in west Virginia does not get enough sleep.
  • Experts also suggest that the financial stress and odd-hour work shifts could also play roles in sleep deprivation among Virginia residents.

A recent study was conducted in the heart of Appalachia to answer the as to why this place has more than double the rate of bad sleep than places like Wisconsin.  The researchers did look at a lot of factors ranging from education to income rates to alcohol drinking to physical and mental health.  The study revealed that younger people with low incomes and poor health conditions were more likely to live in place with high rates of bad sleep.

The counties in Appalachia are the most economically distressed in the US which could be the major factor as to why there are high rates of sleep deprived residents unable to get a wonderful night’s sleep.

A combination of health and money worries is keeping the residents of Appalachia awake all night is the current hypothesis.

It is still unclear about the exact cause but there have been a number of sleep centre that have set up to help tackle the problem of sleeplessness.

How to Improve sleep quality in places like Parkersburg:

A lots of factors need to be taken into consideration but the major factors from the study and health and only issues.

1: Government should invest in youth related programs in order to get the youth engaged in work to earn a living.

2: Health care and Medicare costs should be subsidized to improve the scope of the heath care coverage in Appalachia.

3: Food Stamp programs should be pushed forward more to cater for a wide range of individuals from various economic backgrounds.

4: Education should be made more affordable with a increase in scholarships and grants for economically challenged families or communities.

5: Night curfews should be initiated including alcohol curfews in order to keep residents in doors at night.


On an individual basis, sleep improvement depends on one simple factor and this is maintaining the Circadian sleep rhythms. The maintenance of these rhythms involves:; Early bed time, Regular body detox, proper diet and exercise and low stress levels. West Virginians should encourage friends and family with sleep disorders to attend sleep improvement centers if the disorder is detrimental to they health and very uncomfortable.