Sleep problems and workplace injuries in Canada

Sleep. 2010 May;33(5):611-8. doi: 10.1093/sleep/33.5.611.


Study objective: To investigate the association between sleep problems and risk of work injuries among Canadian workers and to identify working groups most at risk for injuries.

Design: Population-based cross-sectional survey.

Setting: Canada Participants: Working-age respondents (15-64 years of age) who worked part or full-time in the last 12 months (n = 69,584).

Interventions: None.

Methods: This study used data from the Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS) Cycle 1.1 2000-2001.

Measurements and results: The main indicator of sleep problems was reporting trouble going to sleep or staying asleep. Stratified logistic regression models were used to calculate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for the association of sleep problems and work injury after adjusting for potential confounders and for the survey design. Trouble sleeping most of the time was significantly associated with work injury in both men (OR = 1.25, 95% CI = 1.01-1.55) and women (OR = 1.54, 95% CI = 1.25-1.91). The multivariate stratified analysis found that men in trades and transportation jobs (OR = 1.50, 95% CI = 1.09-2.08), women in processing and manufacturing jobs (OR = 2.46, 95% CI = 1.11-5.47), and women who work rotating shifts (OR = 1.71, 95% CI = 1.11-2.64) were at the highest increased risk for work injury associated with trouble sleeping.

Conclusions: Trouble sleeping was associated with an increased risk of work injury. The number of injuries attributable to sleep problems was higher for women compared to men. While most job classes and shift types showed an increased risk of injury, some groups such as women in processing and manufacturing and those who work rotating shifts warrant further investigation and attention for intervention.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Occupational / statistics & numerical data*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Causality
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Odds Ratio
  • Risk Factors
  • Safety
  • Sex Distribution
  • Sleep Disorders, Circadian Rhythm / epidemiology
  • Sleep Wake Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Workplace
  • Young Adult