Gary residents getting less sleep during pandemic

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Study ranks Gary 123 out of 127 Indiana cities

Crusader Staff Report

Gary residents are getting more sleep during the coronavirus pandemic, but the city ranks at the bottom compared to most Indiana cities, according to a survey by Sleepopolis, an online publication that aims to improve the quality of Zs in the bedroom.

The study was based on 12 criteria, including median income, unemployment, air pollution, mental health, the number of smokers, physical activity and obesity.

The good news according to the study is that Gary residents who are now working from home during the stay at home order are sleeping an extra 15.7 hours per month.

Now the bad news. According to the study, Gary has a sleep score of 80.27 and ranks 123 out of 127 Indiana cities that are getting more rest.

East Chicago, which scored 80.31, is also at the bottom of the highest but higher than Gary at 122. Hammond was ranked 103. Hobart is ranked 64, Elkhart came in at 65 and Merrillville was ranked 76.

The highest ranked city in northwest Indiana is Munster in Lake County, which ranked 29 with a score of 82.89.

Indianapolis, the state’s largest city, was ranked 47, with a score of 82.18.

The study found that Carmel, located 16 miles north of Indianapolis, emerged as the best city in the state to have a good night’s rest with an overall sleep score of 87.29.

Rounding out the top 10 in Indiana cities are Zionsville (87.03), Fishers (86.87), Westfield (86.21), Noblesville (85.44), McCordsville (85.16), Hidden Valley (84.92), Bargersville (84.77), Avon (84.61) and Granger (84.41).

Notre Dame, Indiana located north of the city of South Bend, is last on the list with a sleep score of 79.89.

Six of the cities ranked in the top 10 had median household incomes above $100,000. In cities in the top 10, less than 30 people out of 1,000 residents were unemployed. Carmel, the top city, had a median income of $109,201. Zionsville, located 18 miles northwest of Indianapolis, has a median income of $127,152, higher than any other city in the list.

Gary had the second lowest median income on the list with $29,253. Residents in East Chicago made the third lowest, with $30,205. Notre Dame, Indiana had the lowest median income of all cities with $15,625.

The research also revealed that cities near the top of the list have minimal levels of air pollution, which is a contributing factor to sleeping habits. High levels of air pollution correlate with increased rates of breathing diseases such as asthma, cardiovascular disease and lung cancer.

These are strongly linked with obstructive sleep apnea, which is a serious sleep disorder. Experts at Sleepopolis say extended periods of working from home will help to reduce air pollution and therefore add to even more sleep hours per month.

According to Sleepopolis, 36 percent of adults do not get enough sleep each year.

Doctors say lack of sleep can cause weight gain, cardiovascular disease and cognitive problems. The group said 33 percent of adults who have a Body Mass Index above 30 have a greater risk of developing sleep apnea.

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