Deep sleep is essential for the proper functioning of the nervous system.
We can also be more alert and focused, achieve better cognitive performance, and, for example, make less memory or attention mistakes. But how much deep sleep do you need in a night?
Even the sleep society has warned that you can die of lack of sleep sooner than lack of food since many biological processes take place in your sleep.
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Lack of sleep is associated with increased cardiovascular risk, mortality, and some types of cancer.
A person has a good quality of sleep if the time their sleep is not interrupted, and is deep enough to relax the body.
But over the years, the ability to fall asleep or even sleep one night in a row without waking up decreases. Why does it happen?
Before we talk about how much deep sleep do you need, we need to understand various stages of sleep, and what deep sleep is. For that, you must read the below-mentioned post.
Must Read: Stages of Sleep (Deep Sleep & REM Sleep)
How Much Deep Sleep Do You Need?
In healthy adults, roughly 13 to 23 percent of your sleep comprises of deep sleep. So in case, you sleep for 8 hours a night, that’s approximately 62 to 110 minutes.
During deep sleep, a variety of functions take place in the body and mind that are vital for survival. Without deep sleep, these functions cannot take place, and the signs of sleep deprivation kick in.
On the other hand, there does not appear to be any such thing as too much deep sleep.
How many hours do we need to sleep
Most people know that having a good night’s sleep is essential, but very few spend eight or more hours between the sheets.
To further complicate matters, stimulants like coffee and energy drinks, plus the alarm clock and lights – including those on electronic devices – interfere with the circadian rhythm (the wake and sleep cycle).
A panel of sleep experts from the National Sleep Foundation, an American nonprofit research institute based in Arlington, Virginia, published general recommendations depending on each age group.
New Borns (0-3 months)
Ideally, they sleep between 14-17 hours each day, although it is also acceptable for them to sleep between 11 and 13 hours. But sleeping more than 18 hours is a matter of concern.
Babies (4-11 Months)
at birth, the body clock that dictates the time we spend awake and the hours we sleep according to the hours of light and darkness is not mature, so newly borns can sleep an average of 17 hours a day. As the months go by, they adapt to the light and dark cycle, sleeping longer at night and less during the day.
Young Children (1-2 Years)
They should sleep, not below 9 hours and not more than 15 or 16 hours. The ideal time frame maybe 11 to 14 hours of sleep for young children.
Pre-School Children (3-5 years)
High levels of activity in young children still require ten to 13 hours of sleep. When they are older (around ten years old), the amount of time they sleep decreases to between eight and 12, always depending on the needs of each child.
School-Age Children (6-13 Years)
it would be advisable to sleep between 9 and 11 hours.
Adolescents (14-17 Years)
from the age of 14, studies show that adolescents need precisely 9.25 hours of sleep at night on a daily basis to achieve that number.
Younger Adults (18-25 Years)
between 7-9 hours a day, and not less than six nor more than 10-11.
Adults (26 – 64 Years)
Normally, an adult feels rested with between 7.5 and eight hours of sleep a day.
Seniors (beyond 65 Years)
the average is about seven hours of sleep, but the problem at this stage is, among other things that we explain later, the dream becomes less deep.
To Lose Weight
Based on the latest studies carried out on the subject, a series of recommendations suggest that a lousy rest truncates your goal of losing weight at night.
Sleep for 8 hours.
The night’s darkness is needed to lose weight. Brief exposure to light during sleep reduces melatonin, alters the internal clock causing increased appetite, slow metabolism, and insulin resistance.
Suppress any activity that involves sleeping fewer hours at night (partying until the wee hours, watching television until dawn, etc.).
To Burn Calories
Although we are sleeping, the body needs energy for a proper internal function. Adults need to sleep 6 to 8 hours a day, and children up to 10 hours.
People who sleep less than 5 hours a day produce higher levels of Ghrelin, which is the hormone that increases the desire to eat, which results in less Leptin, which is the hormone that suppresses hunger.
In general, the feeling of hunger gets triggered when we lead a disordered life filled with schedules and meals. For this reason, the latest studies on this matter affirm that sleeping DOES NOT make you gain weight.
When we get up, we weigh less because it is at night that our bodies burn more calories.
To Build Muscles
Sports scientists and health experts, explain how exercise leads to small destruction in the tissue structures of the muscles, with higher loads, there is also tiny inflammation. These structures need to be restored and repaired to function and grow again.
The regeneration of the muscle happens in the first few hours of sleep, in other words, in the deep sleep phase. The body needs building materials for repairs. The most important are the proteins. There are amino acids that target the muscles and regeneration directly.
Regeneration takes time. It can take 72-84 hours, a good three days, until completely “healed” again. The secretion of the human growth hormone during the deep sleep phase further accelerates the process of repairing your muscle tissues and as results build more muscle tissues.
To Burn Fat
In a study, ten overweight men and women volunteered in a sleep laboratory for a total of four weeks. They followed a reduced-calorie diet and examined the effects of sleep duration on the weight loss process in blocks of two weeks each.
The result was clear. In the two weeks those participants who slept for 8.5 hours, lose more than 50 percent of the weight due to fat burn. Alternatively, the subjects who got only 5.5 hours of sleep per night, the fat loss was turned out to be 25 percent.
It means that the difference of three hours of sleep per night reduced fat loss by 55 percent.
Sleep disorders are problems related to sleep. These include difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep, falling asleep at inappropriate times, sleeping too much, and abnormal behaviors during sleep.
What Are The 5 Common Sleep Disorders?
There are roughly 80 thousand different types of sleep disorders, and around 70 million Americans are suffering from them.
The five major sleep disorders are:
- Insomnia is difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep at night.
- Sleep Apnea is abnormal breathing patterns while you are asleep.
- Restless Leg Syndrome is a type of sleep movement disorder, also called Willis-Ekbom disease that causes an uncomfortable feeling and an urge to move your legs when you’re trying to fall asleep.
- Narcolepsy is a condition that causes extreme drowsiness during the day and suddenly falling asleep during the day
- Restless Leg Syndrome is a sort of sleep motion disorder, also known as Willis-Ekbom disorder which leads to an uncomfortable sensation and an impulse to move your thighs when you are attempting to fall asleep.
Given the number of people suffering from such disorders, it becomes tough for them to lose weight and burn fat even if they are following a proper diet and exercise regimen.
What are the Symptoms of sleep disorders?
Indications of sleep disorders include being drained throughout the day and difficulty falling asleep through the night.
Other indications include breathing in an irregular pattern and lack of comfort while attempting to fall asleep. Strange or bothersome moves during sleep are also possible.
Having an irregular sleep and wake cycle is another symptom of sleep disorders
How To Treat Sleep Disorders
Continued lack of sleep and other sleep disorder increases your risk of health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, and chronic pain.
If you have recognized any symptom of sleep disorder in yourself, talk to your doctor about the best way to treat, and how you can control sleep problems. Sleep disorders like Insomnia and narcolepsy are unlikely to improve without treatment.
For people suffering from Insomnia, in particular, Cognitive behavioral therapy can be beneficial. Cognitive-behavioral treatment can help individuals who’ve Insomnia and people who have physical issues, such as chronic pain, or psychological ailments, like depression and stress. Additionally, the effects appear to be permanent
And there is no evidence that cognitive-behavioral therapy for Insomnia has adverse side effects.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy for Insomnia requires constant practice, and some approaches may make you sleepless at first. But don’t give up; chances are you will get lasting results.
Sleep Quality How To Improve It?
There are habits that will help you improve the quality of your sleep. Discover them.
In many occasions, it is enough to follow some practical advice to guarantee that our sleep will be of good quality. Here are some 14 steps to improve your sleep quality:
- Try to go to bed only when you feel sleepy.
- You should wake up and sleep at the same time each day without missing.
- Do not lengthen the time in bed and stay long enough and necessary.
- Avoid naps not exceeding 20 minutes or even not taking them.
- Try not to watch TV or eat in bed. The bed is for sleeping.
- Do exercises that relax your mind and body for eg. meditation.
- Take a hot bath to increase relaxation.
- Do not perform stressful activities before bed.
- Maintain optimal environmental conditions and conducive to sleep: proper ventilation, dim light, or off, without noise.
- Do not use technological devices such as mobile phones, tablets, etc. before going to bed.
- Leave a reasonable time from dinner to bedtime.
- Avoid large dinners, rich in sugars, fats, or with a lot of liquid, as they can interfere with sleep due to poor digestion, the desire to go to the bathroom.
- Do not go to bed hungry, thirsty, or feeling like you have to go to the bathroom.
- Keep in mind that caffeine and nicotine are stimulants that interfere with adequate sleep.
Not everyone needs the same hours of sleep. Therefore the amount of sleep varies from person to person. However, age and phase of life determine the sleeping pattern.
Since children are younger, it is more natural and more common to sleep more, and over the years, they sleep less. In general, the necessary or ideal hours of sleep to be rested varies for different age groups.
Also, sleep plays a vital role when it comes to achieving various lifestyle goals. Be it losing weight, burning fat & calories or building muscles, sleep is at the center of all your efforts.
Further, we learned the five most common types of sleep orders most people are suffering. We also dive into how can you identify whether you’re suffering from any sleep disorder and the 14 actions you can take right away if you’re concerned about your health.
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