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Frontiers in Psychology







Although researchers have investigated the impact of social isolation on well-being, the recent quarantines due to COVID-19 resulted in a social isolation environment that was unique to any examined in the past. Because sleep is one of the endogenous drives that impacts short and long-term health and well-being, it is important to consider how social isolation during the COVID-19 government-mandated quarantines affected sleep and sleep habits. A number of researchers have addressed this question during the last 2 years by examining several concepts related to possible changes in sleep during the quarantines. To best understand these recent results, the current mini review provides a background on the pre-pandemic literature on the effects of social isolation and loneliness with a focus on sleep and then summarizes the recent literature on sleep and sleep habits. In general, sleep was negatively impacted for many people during the pandemics but not all. One group that seemed to benefit from the pandemic in terms of sleep patterns, were younger people who could more easily adapt their sleep times to match their internal chronobiology. Given the potential broad impact of sleep on health and well-being, better understanding how social isolation impacts sleep is an important consideration for individuals, work organizations, and governments.


Copyright © 2022 Pilcher, Dorsey, Galloway and Erikson. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.