We are sure that most of us sometimes wish we had a better daily routine, especially when it comes to our sleep and sleeping habits. Some people can wake up after just 5 hours sleep, feel fresh and ready to conquer the world, while others sleep 10 hours and feel like they could easily sleep 10 more.
But the question is, is there a golden rule on how much sleep a human needs? What is the perfect amount?
In this blog article we will look at what is the recommended amount of sleeping hours, why it is important to make sure you get a good night sleep, as well as some common misconceptions about sleeping.
Let’s get into it!
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Common Misconceptions About Sleep
Today there are a lot of myths and misconceptions about sleep out there. While some of them might be true, most of them are not!
How many times have you heard someone saying they are going to spend the weekend 'catching up on their sleep'? However, this is actually a very common and classic myth about sleeping. The sad truth is that you cannot catch up on sleep by sleeping more on the weekend.
For you to have a good and healthy sleeping routine, you actually need a consistent sleeping schedule. If you for some reason are unable to get a perfect night's sleep, it is better for you to take a daytime nap, rather than waiting to the weekend. Oh by the way, you should aim for a daytime nap to be longer than 15 minutes but shorter than one hour!
Another common misconception is that you don't need as much sleep as you get older (compared to when you were in your 20s, not a toddler), but this is not true either. Sleep is just as important for elderly adults as it is for people in their mid 20s!
And finally, the last misconception we often hear is that some people, with a hectic schedule, believe that they can function just fine with very little sleep. But this isn't the case either. As humans, sleeping is part of our nature, and we need a good amount of it to be able to function at our full potential!
We at Drift Sleepwear love everything sleep and relaxation related, whether it is sleepwear for men, breakfast in bed or duvet Sundays on the sofa, we are here for it! Therefore, we feel it is important to address some of these myths, so that you can make sure you're getting the best possible sleep!
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What Happens When You Sleep?
To start explaining why having a good sleeping routine is important, we thought it would be best to talk about what is actually happening when you sleep. Apart from you dreaming about scoring the winning goal in the World Cup final, or you are being chased by zombies down the street, many things happens to you and your body when you sleep.
The things that happen when you sleep are all essential and important for your health and overall well-being.
- Your body temperature drops, and your heart rate slows down when you sleep. This helps your body conserve energy and repair cells.
- Your brain waves change during sleep. This helps you process information and consolidate memories.
- Your body releases hormones during sleep. These hormones help regulate appetite, offer disease control, improve metabolism and growth.
- Finally, sleep helps you detoxify your body. While you sleep, your body eliminates toxins and waste products that build up during the day.
Isn’t it crazy that all these things happen to you when you sleep (and are deep in your dreams). So, make sure you're getting enough amount of sleep every night!
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Why Is Sleep Important?
So why is sleep so important? We believe that the four things we talked about above, that happens to you when you sleep, speak for themselves and show the importance of sleeping. However, if you still are not convinced, here is two other great reasons!
According to the National Sleep Foundation, a better immune system is directly linked to your sleep and sleeping pattern. Meaning, if you make sure you have a good sleeping cycle, your immune system will get stronger, and who doesn't want that, especially considering the last couple of years!
The other reason why sleep is so important is because it can help improving your overall mental health! A good sleeping habit can help you to concentrate better in your daily life, it will help you to remember information more efficiently, and make better decisions.
Plus, a daily dose of the ideal hours of sleep can help reduce stress and anxiety. You will have more energy to do the things you enjoy, and you'll be able to better manage everyday stressors!
Negative Effects of Sleep Deprivation
We completely understand that maintaining a healthy sleeping habit and pattern is easier said than done. We would never expect you to give up night out with friends. But constantly not getting enough sleep will result in some negative consequences, such as sleep deprivation...
Sleep deprivation can lead to decreased productivity. Due to this, you may have trouble focusing on your job and other tasks, and not being able to complete them on time. Yes, we know that going to bed early the night before a deadline might not be ideal, but by making sure you plan your sleep and naps right, you will be able to be more productive and smash whatever task you are doing!
A lack of sleep also results in decreased motor skills and reflexes, which could lead to an increased risk of accidents. Driving a car when suffering from sleep deprivation can be just as dangerous as driving under the influence!
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What is the Best Way To Wind Down Before Bed?
As we are sure you understand from this article, sleeping is very important! But going to bed after a cup of coffee or straight after you get home will result in you spending a long time trying to fall asleep.
Counting sheep (in all its glory) might work for some... but there are other ways that will help you even more. Here are five great pieces of advice on simple things that you can do to wind down before you go to bed:
- Try to go to bed around the same time. This will help regulate your body's sleep cycle and your body will know it is sleep time. But remember, don't be to hard on yourself, it is OK to have a night out with your friends!
- Avoid using any electric devices in bed or right before going to bed. Do not spend an hour in bed on TikTok or Instagram. Simply put down your phone on your bedside table and we are certain you will fall asleep quicker!
- Avoid caffeine and alcohol before bed, as they can disrupt your sleep. Why not try a relaxing decaf tea!
- Try to create a relaxing bedtime routine that will help you wind down before going to sleep. For example, you can read a few pages of your favourite book or even read the newspaper to stay up to date with world events!
- And finally, make sure your bedroom is dark, quiet, and cool to create the ideal sleep environment. And, make sure the sleepwear you are wearing is comfy, cool and ideally made from a natural fibre such as 100% organic cotton!
Want to learn more about how to improve you sleep? Why not check out our blog post about '8 Products Designed to Improve Your Sleep in 2022'!
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How Much Sleep Do We Need?
So to go back and answer the main question, how much sleep do we need per night?
We are aware of the fact that we have not yet given you an exact number of hours you should sleep each night. That is because the answer is.... it depends.
It is a question that scientists have been researching and trying to answer for decades. While there are some general recommendations out there, the answer may vary depending on your individual needs, lifestyle, and overall health.
Today many experts argue, that as a rule of thumb, most adults need at least 7 hours of good sleep to avoid health problems related to a lack of sleep. However, the need for sleep and sleep duration may vary for different age groups, health, sleep habits, and other factors. It is rather obvious that a baby or a toddler will need more sleep and relaxing times than a full-grown adult. It is ideal for adults to get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep, for overall good health.
One way to see what works best for you is to simply test it! Sleep 7 hours a day for a week, then 8 hours for a week and then finally 9 hours for a week. Take notes throughout the day and by paying attention to how you are feeling, your energy levels etc, and you will be able to figure out what is best for you!
But one thing is for sure, getting enough good quality sleep is essential for your physical and mental well-being.
Being sleep deprived will do you no good. In case you have trouble sleeping or getting less than seven hours of sleep daily, you need to change this routine.
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We hope this article has helped clear up some of the common misconceptions about sleep, and shown you just how vital a good night's rest really is. So put down your phone and go to bed!