How Social Roles Affect Sleep Health during Midlife

Cleothia Frazier, Tyson H. Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


This study draws on role theory and the life course perspective to examine how sleep health (duration, quality, and latency) is shaped by social role accumulation (number of roles), role repertoires (role combinations), and role contexts among middle-aged adults. We also examine how the relationships between social roles and sleep health are gendered. We use data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 Cohort (N = 7,628). Results show that role accumulation is associated with less sleep and decreased insomnia symptoms, and that role repertoires also impact sleep (e.g., parenthood leads to diminished sleep quantity and quality). There is also evidence that contextual factors related to employment history, marital quality, and parenthood affect sleep health. Furthermore, results reveal that several of the relationships between social roles and sleep are gendered. Taken together, findings demonstrate the utility of examining links between multiple dimensions of social roles and sleep health.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)296-312
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of health and social behavior
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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