Sleep effort and its measurement: A scoping review

Daniel Ruivo Marques, Luís Pires, Niall M. Broomfield, Colin A. Espie

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Insomnia disorder is characterized by disruption in sleep continuity and an overall dissatisfaction with sleep. A relevant feature of insomnia is sleep effort, which refers to both cognitive and behavioural conscious attempts to initiate sleep. The Glasgow Sleep Effort Scale is a self-report tool developed to assess this construct. The objective of the current scoping review was to map how sleep effort has been discussed in the literature and operationalized through its respective measure. Medline/PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science and PsycInfo databases were used to search for potential studies. The search query used in databases was the specific name of the self-reported tool itself (Glasgow Sleep Effort Scale) and “sleep effort” term. This scoping review followed JBI guidelines. To be included, records pertaining to any type of study that mentioned the Glasgow Sleep Effort Scale were considered. No language constraint was used. At the end, 166 initial records were retrieved. From those, 46 records met eligibility criteria and were analysed. Among the main findings, it was observed that the Glasgow Sleep Effort Scale has been increasingly used in recent years, with a notable observed upward trend, especially in the last 2 years. In addition to the original measure, only three published adapted versions of the instrument were identified. This suggests that there is limited research on adapting the scale for different populations or contexts. Sleep effort has been increasingly studied in the last few years. Nonetheless, more research on the Glasgow Sleep Effort Scale tool is recommended, including cross-cultural adaptations.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere14206
JournalJournal of Sleep Research
Early online date6 Apr 2024
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 6 Apr 2024


  • Glasgow Sleep Effort Scale
  • insomnia
  • scoping review
  • sleep
  • sleep effort

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