Background: Loneliness and low mood are associated with significant negative health outcomes including poor sleep, but the strength of the evidence underlying these associations varies. There is strong evidence that poor sleep quality and low mood are linked, but only emerging evidence that loneliness and poor sleep are associated.
Aims: To independently replicate the finding that loneliness and poor subjective sleep quality are associated and to extend past research by investigating lifestyle regularity as a possible mediator of relationships, since lifestyle regularity has been linked to loneliness and poor sleep.
Methods: Using a cross-sectional design, 97 adults completed standardized measures of loneliness, lifestyle regularity, subjective sleep quality and mood.
Results: Loneliness was a significant predictor of sleep quality. Lifestyle regularity was not a predictor of, nor associated with, mood, sleep quality or loneliness.
Conclusions: This study provides an important independent replication of the association between poor sleep and loneliness. However, the mechanism underlying this link remains unclear. A theoretically plausible mechanism for this link, lifestyle regularity, does not explain the relationship between loneliness and poor sleep. The nexus between loneliness and poor sleep is unlikely to be broken by altering the social rhythm of patients who present with poor sleep and loneliness.