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Journal Article


Kim S, Kim Y, Lim SS, Ryoo JH, Yoon JH. Saf. Health Work 2019; 10(4): 470-475.


The Institute for Occupational Health, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Republic of Korea.


(Copyright © 2019, Occupational Safety and Health Research Institute)








BACKGROUND: There is a lack of statistical analysis investigating the relationship between sleep problems and commute time in Korea. We aimed to analyze the association between representative health symptoms, sleep disturbances, and commute time according to working hours in Korea.

METHODS: The 4th Korean Working Conditions Survey data were used for analysis, and unpaid family workers and workers who work fewer than three days in a week were excluded. Commute time, working hours, and sleep hours were assessed using self-reported questionnaires. Odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for sleep problems were calculated using a multivariate logistic regression model with ≤10 min commute time as the reference group.

RESULTS: Among a total of 28,804 workers (men = 14,945, women = 13,859), 2.6% of men and 3.2% of women experienced sleep problems. In both sexes, long commute time (51-60 minutes and >60 minutes) showed an increased OR [men, 2.03 (CI = 1.32-3.13) and 2.05 (CI = 1.33-3.17); women, 1.58 (CI = 1.05-2.39) and 1.63 (CI = 1.06-2.50), respectively]. In stratification analysis of working hours, long commute time (51-60 and > 60 minutes) showed an increased OR in men working >40 hours/week [2.08 (CI = 1.16-3.71) and 1.92 (CI = 1.08-3.41), respectively]. Furthermore, long commute time (41-50, 51-60, and >60 minutes) showed an increased OR in women working >40 hours/week [2.40 (CI = 1.27-4.55), 2.28 (CI = 1.25-4.16), and 2.19 (CI = 1.17-4.16), respectively]. Moreover, commute time >60 minutes showed an increased OR in women working ≤40 hours/week [1.96 (CI = 1.06-3.62)].

CONCLUSION: This large cross-sectional study highlights that long commute time is related to sleep problems in both sexes. Shorter commute times and decreased working hours are needed to prevent sleep problems in workers.

© 2019 The Authors.

Language: en


CI, confidence interval; Commute time; HPA, hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal; KWCS, 4th Korean Working Conditions Survey; OR, odds ratio; Sleep problems; Working hours; Work–life balance


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