MPR News with Angela Davis

Getting better sleep in anxious times   

A graphic of a Black man sleeping
According to the Centers for Disease Control, 43 percent of Black people sleep less than seven hours per night.
Photo illustration by Kim Jackson

Remember turning your clock back earlier this month as we came off daylight saving time? Maybe you felt more alert and lively the next day because you got an extra hour of sleep. But what happens next?

Sleep is a cornerstone of health, but many people aren’t getting enough of it. Over a quarter of American adults don’t get the recommended seven hours of sleep a night. Older adults are even more likely to be sleep deprived with almost 20 percent saying they have frequent insomnia or poor sleep quality, according to a 2022 study published in the journal BMC Public Health.  

MPR News host Angela Davis talks with a neurologist and sleep expert about why good sleep can be elusive — especially in these anxious times — and how to get a better night’s rest.   


  • Dr. Michael Howell is a neurologist at the University of Minnesota Medical School and M Health Fairview who treats patients with sleep disorders. His interests include REM sleep behavior disorder, sleepwalking and related disorders, sleep-related eating disorder, violent sleep behaviors and traumatic brain injury.

women and man in broadcast studio
MPR News host Angela Davis (left) talks about how to get better sleep with Dr. Michael Howell, a neurologist at the University of Minnesota Medical School and M Health Fairview, in an MPR News studio in St. Paul on Wednesday.
Maja Beckstrom | MPR News

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Use the audio player above to listen to the full conversation.

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