Epworth Sleepiness Scale

How likely are you to doze off or fall asleep in the following situations, in contrast to feeling just tired?

The Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) is a subjective scale that measures an individual’s propensity to doze or fall asleep during 8 common daily activities to determine the level of daytime sleepiness.

This refers to your usual way of life in recent times.

Even if you haven’t done some of these things recently try to work out how they would have affected you.

Use this self-test to determine if you are getting enough sleep

According to the National Sleep Foundation, nearly seven out of 10 Americans say they experience frequent sleep problems and a majority of American adults (67 percent) do not get the recommended eight hours of sleep per night.

Use the following scale to choose the most appropriate number for each situation:

0 = would never doze
1 = slight chance of dozing
2 = moderate chance of dozing
3 = high chance of dozing

It is important that you answer each question as best you can.

Epworth Sleepiness Scale

Likelihood of having a sleep disorder is ranked on a scale of 0-24 after all questions have been answered, and the total points of “chances of dozing” are added to produce a single number.

  • 0-7: Unlikely that patient is abnormally sleepy
  • 8-9: Patient has an average amount of daytime sleepiness
  • 10-15: Patient may be excessively sleepy depending on the situation. Patient may want to consider seeking medical treatment
  • 16-24: Patient is excessively sleepy and should consider seeking medical attention.

The reason the ESS has become the standard assessment tool for symptoms of sleepiness is because it is a very quick questionnaire to complete and it gives a generalized level of a person’s average sleepiness.

There are many factors that may cause a person to be excessively sleepy all the time, and the ESS does not try to distinguish what those factors may be, but rather distinguishes that excessive sleepiness may be a health concern that warrants further diagnosis.

The ESS is not a diagnostic tool in itself. It is an assessment tool that physicians and sleep medicine professionals use to determine whether a patient should schedule a sleep study to diagnose, or rule out sleep disorders that may be affecting their everyday sleep.