How much sleep do you need?
A person needs 7-9 hours of sleep every day, preferably at night. Sleep has two phases: slow and fast (paradoxically). They cycle several times, so it is very important that sleep is uninterrupted. During the slow phase of sleep, restorative processes of the nervous system and body take place, while during the fast phase, memory is consolidated, information is processed, mental balance is restored, and the immune system is stabilized.
If a person constantly wants to sleep and does so for more than 9-10 hours, it may be a symptom of chronic diseases related to breathing, heart or nerves.
When there is too little sleep
If after waking up in the morning you feel refreshed and ready to start the day within about 15 minutes, it means that you have had enough sleep. But if it takes a lot of coffee and time to wake up, you probably didn't get enough sleep. If possible, it is important to compensate for the lack of sleep on such days, after which it is necessary to return to sleep mode.
Napping in the afternoon is not recommended, but if the body really needs it, you can take a nap for 20-30 minutes, but not longer. In this way, a person will not be able to fall into a deep sleep and will not feel sleepy when he wakes up. Setting an alarm can help control this time. It is also important that the afternoon nap does not take place after 3 p.m.
What causes sleep disturbances?
Sleep can be disturbed due to an inappropriate lifestyle, active mental activity, excessive information loads, overwork, emotional and other tension, stress or environmental disturbances.
People who work night or shift work are also at a higher risk of experiencing sleep disturbances because of their biorhythms.
Sleep is also disturbed by: drinking coffee or caffeinated drinks, black and green tea and alcohol before going to bed or abusing them during the day; smoking; chocolate; fatty and spicy food; acute health disorders; irregular bedtime and wake-up time; noon nap; poor sleep hygiene; allergies; medicines; menstrual cycle; hypoglycemia (a sudden drop in blood sugar that causes you to wake up); time zone change; temperature fluctuations.
The use of sleeping pills is not a solution to a sleep disorder, as they can become addictive. Reducing the causes of insomnia is a much more effective remedy.
The dangers of poor sleep
Sleeping less than 7 hours and more than 9 hours can cause various ailments:
Fatigue, malaise and low mood. It also becomes more difficult to manage anger, feel happy, recognize other people's emotions and react to them appropriately.
Impaired concentration and reaction.
Impaired short-term memory.
A more difficult solution to various problems.
Decreased work capacity.
Disturbed metabolism and digestion.
Impaired regeneration of skin, bones, joints and muscles. Arthritis may develop.
High blood pressure. Heart failure and myocardial infarction or stroke may develop.
Balanced hormones. Thyroid function may be impaired.
Overweight and obesity. Hormones that regulate hunger and satiety are disrupted, so lack of sleep can lead to consuming even 300 kilocalories more than usual.
Restless legs syndrome.
An earlier death.
12 tips to get a good night's sleep
In the morning, within two hours of waking up, spend at least 30 minutes in the fresh air to get sunlight. It doesn't matter if it's cloudy outside, the sun's rays still penetrate the clouds. Sunlight will help regulate biological rhythms and make it easier to fall asleep and wake up.
Be physically active during the day.
Do not drink coffee, black and green tea, do not smoke and do not consume alcohol 4-6 hours before bedtime. Alcohol can relax you and help you fall asleep, but it actually affects the quality of your sleep, and even with 8-9 hours of sleep, insomnia is common.
Go to bed and get up at the same time every day. On weekends, there may be a difference of one hour, but not more.
Do not eat 2-3 hours before bedtime. Avoid heavy, fatty, spicy and sugary foods and overeating during dinner.
Do sleep rituals: take a bath, drink herbal tea or a glass of warm water, read, listen to relaxing music, draw, color, chat with loved ones.
Do not exercise actively 2-4 hours before bedtime.
Do not do any work or planning for 1 hour before going to bed. Also avoid stress.
Avoid using your phone, computer, tablet or TV 1-3 hours before bed. If this is not possible, it is advisable to at least put on night filters or reduce the intensity of the screen resolution.
Sleep in a dark and cool room.
If you have intrusive thoughts that prevent you from falling asleep, write them down on a piece of paper and mark a possible solution. Use relaxation techniques: self-training, self-hypnosis, meditation or eutonia.