Full Moons May Keep You Up at Night, Study Shows

July 26, 2013 | Andy Cush

The next full moon is August 21, a Wednesday. Don’t plan on getting a good night’s sleep. New analysis of a years-old study shows that when the werewolves come out, the regular people may be having trouble getting rest at night.

Christian Cajochen, a researcher at Switzerland’s University of Basel, realized the information from an older study about the resting patterns of people of various ages could also be used to analyze their sleep’s relationship to the phases of the moon. They found that the closer the patients were tested to a full moon, the worse their deep, non-rapid eye movement (NREM) sleep got. Those who tested closest to a full moon got 30 percent less NREM sleep than the average.

Of course, there’s no proof of correlation–the study wasn’t even designed for phases of the moon, but Cajochen believes controls were tight enough to warrant interest.

“I believe their results do suggest that the lunar cycle can influence human sleep,” said Marie Dumont, who studies sleep at the University of Montreal. “Although this will have to be replicated by others as there’s always the possibility they occurred by chance.”


(Photo: asterix116/Flickr)