Are you getting enough sleep? Sara Khan, the langley academy
Experts say that adults are suggested to have 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night whilst teenagers are suggested to have a minimum of 8 to 10 hours. However, there are some exceptions. For example, pregnant women often need more sleep than the usual required amount. The same case in new-born babies who need 14-17 hours of sleep per night, however as they grow and mature this time gradually decreases.
Why does this matter?
Getting enough sleep is essential for maintaining a healthy lifestyle both mentally and physically. Researchers state that lack of sleep has strong links to short term and long-term consequences. Short term consequences include bad memory and performance, a disruption in your regular sleep pattern could result in a lack of focus and decision making throughout your day. Research says that it also weakens your immune system as your body is not having the needed amount of time to repair and strengthen the immune system overnight. In the long term, this could develop into more serious illnesses and diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hormonal abnormalities, obesity and more.
On a more positive note, getting enough sleep has many useful outcomes such as a better athletic performance which is from having more energy from a good night’s sleep, meaning an improved accuracy and reaction time. Although this is highly beneficial for athletes, getting enough sleep benefits everyone. This is proven through the fact that people who sleep more are proven to have a lower chance of developing long term illnesses such as heart disease. This is as your body needs rest to allow the blood pressure to regulate itself whilst your asleep. Other benefits include: lower weight gain risk, preventing depression, lower inflammation and more.
We know that its recommended to get enough sleep, but is it possible to be getting too much sleep?
When it comes to sleep, getting enough of it always a good thing, or is it? Oversleeping has been traced back too many health problems and can be linked with the causes of many. People who suffer from hypersomnia (feeling excessively tired) experience symptoms of anxiety as result of their constant need for sleep. It’s also proven to be unhealthy to take naps during the day as it disrupts your sleeping pattern, which causes sleepiness throughout the day.
How to improve this?
Although many people get insufficient sleep because of school, work or just their sleeping pattern. There are necessary steps to manage sleepiness and correct the quality of sleep you get. Ways to do this could be by having a consistent sleep schedule to be used to the times you go to sleep and then wake up, setting boundaries in your social life to not take away dedicated time reserved for sleep and by having a set bedtime routine including when you should brush your teeth, get into pyjamas and putting electronics away to not get distracted.
Although sleep is something we may not pay much attention to, its important we all put effort into maintaining a healthy and sufficient sleep schedule to maintain our health and wellbeing both mentally and physically.