New research from the University of Leeds has revealed that some people are losing more than 15 day's worth of sleep a year.
The study showed that more than a quarter of the British population suffer from dangerously low levels of sleep - with many sleeping as little as five hours per night - and that it could harm their health.
Despite aiming to undertake around eight - nine hours sleep a night, 30 to 50 year-olds were the most likely group for being in debt to their sleep body clocks.
Dr Anna Weighall, from the University of Leeds' School of Psychology, who led the research said: "It is interesting to note the significant gap between how much sleep people think they need or intend to get and how much they actually get.
"This is of particular interest in terms of how the public health agenda might improve the nation's sleep because it suggests that we need to focus on giving people the tools necessary to change their behaviour, alongside information about the importance of sleep."
30 per cent of respondents reported being dissatisfied with their sleep and 18 per cent said that poor sleep negatively affected their daily functioning.
Dr Weighall, added: "Less than five hours each night is associated with serious negative health outcomes including cardiovascular problems, obesity and diabetes. The increasing demands of modern life, social media and connected technologies may affect the quality and quantity of our sleep and pose a serious and detrimental threat to health."
Provided by University of Leeds