Perceived neighborhood safety and sleep quality: A global analysis of six countries

Terrence D. Hill, Ha Ngoc Trinh, Ming Wen, Lauren Hale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Scopus citations


Objective: Building on previous North American and European studies of neighborhood context and sleep quality, we tested whether several self-reported sleep outcomes (sleep duration, insomnia symptoms, sleepiness, lethargy, and overall sleep quality) vary according to the level of perceived neighborhood safety in six countries: Mexico, Ghana, South Africa, India, China, and Russia. Methods: Using data (n = 39,590) from Wave I of the World Health Organization's Longitudinal Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (2007-2010), we estimated a series of multinomial and binary logistic regression equations to model each sleep outcome within each country. Results: Taken together, our results show that respondents who feel safe from crime and violence in their neighborhoods tend to exhibit more favorable sleep outcomes than respondents who feel less safe. This general pattern is especially pronounced in China and Russia, moderately evident in Mexico, Ghana, and South Africa, and sporadic in India. Perceptions of neighborhood safety are strongly associated with insomnia symptoms and poor sleep quality (past 30 days), moderately associated with sleepiness, lethargy, and poor sleep quality (past 2 days), and inconsistently associated with sleep duration (past two days). Conclusions: We show that perceived neighborhood safety is associated with more favorable self-reported sleep outcomes in six understudied countries. Additional research is needed to replicate our findings using longitudinal data, more reliable neighborhood measures, and more direct measures of sleep quality in these and other regions of the world.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)56-60
Number of pages5
JournalSleep Medicine
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016


  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Mexico
  • Neighborhood
  • Sleep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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