Time in Bed
Before becoming president, Trump issued several tweets denigrating sleep and
trumpeting the little time he devotes to it ("about four hours")
While campaigning, he again mentioned the four-hour figure
He has also said three to four hours 4
During the first four months of his presidency, the timing of his tweets suggests
he normally -- but not always -- sleeps from midnight to six a.m.
(of course, tweeting is only an indirect
measure of sleep/wake state).
Journalistic accounts describe him waking around 5:30 am, after 5 to 6 hours of
sleep, watching television, tweeting, then
going to work 5
"Trump normally set his own schedule on when to start the day and often had
flexibility when he returned to the residence"
"During Trump's first six months in the White House ... [he] didn't show up for
work until 11:00 in the morning" 6b
His chief of staff tried, "with only modest success," to "accelerate the start
of [Trump's] workday" to arrive in the office by 9:00 or 9:30 am
. His nightly dinner in the White House residence
begins at 6:30 or 7 p.m. 5
, though he prefers
by that time to be in bed with a cheeseburger 7
Before the presidency: "he goes to bed late, gets up early"
There is little description of his sleep quality. As a mark of bravado, he said
"I slept like a rock" the day after a long practice session preparing for an
interview with the Mueller investigators 6c
One source of sleep disruption can be ruled out: Trump and his wife maintain
separate rooms in the White House -- the first presidential couple
since the Kennedys
to do so 7
Without deliberately searching, Dr. Zebra has encountered several descriptions of overt
daytime somnolence in Trump:
While a presidential candidate, an aide sent
to brief him on the Constitution reported: "I got as far as the Fourth Amendment
before his finger is pulling down on his lip and his eyes are rolling back in his
After a night with no sleep in May 2017, during a
week of exhaustion MORE:
"He stifles yawns.
His eyes narrow. And ultimately, when he garbles part of his speech, an aide
explains that President Donald Trump is `just an exhausted guy.'"
At a meeting of the G7 in June 2018,
the New York Times delicately reported:
"At some points, Mr. Trump closed his eyes in what people in the room took
to mean he was dozing off"
These reports describe somnolence, not boredom.
Although his physician had sought fit to give Trump a sleeping aid (pill) during
travel across time zones 9
as of early 2018 he had not taken a sleep history at all, was unaware of even
the most basic sleep parameters of the President, and based his medical
judgments on speculation.
When asked in January 2018 how much Trump sleeps, Dr.
He doesn't sleep much. I mean, I would say that — you know, this is just
my guess based on being around him. I didn't ask him this question, so I could
be wrong on this, but I would say he sleeps four to five hours a night. And I
think he’s probably been that way his whole life. That’s probably
one of the reasons why he’s been successful, I don't know. ...
But he’s just one of those
people, I think, that just does not require a lot of sleep.
The report of the 2019 physical examination 10
does not mention sleep either.