Sleep is very essential for your overall health. In fact, good sleep is just as important as exercising and eating healthy. Unfortunately, many people are now sleeping for lesser hours than they actually did in the past. In addition to this, most people’s sleep quality has significantly reduced over time. This is very unfortunate because sleep is a critical indicator of an individual’s overall health and wellbeing. Therefore, a huge percentage of people have no understanding of how a good night’s sleep feels like, and the benefits it has on their bodies. This article looks at the reasons why good sleep is important to you, and advises you on the number of hours you should sleep.
Sleep Improves Productivity
Sleep is very essential for ensuring proper brain function. It affects major factors such as concentration, cognition, performance, and overall productivity. All these areas can be affected negatively by lack of sleep. A research conducted by the National Institute of Health showed that people deprived of sleep made more errors at their workplace compared to those who enjoyed good sleep. In fact, studies show sleep deprivation can negatively affect the brain in the same way as alcohol intoxication.
Sleep Improves Memory
Not many people know this, but your mind is usually quite busy while you sleep. During sleep, your brain can strengthen memories, and even practice things you learnt through the day. This process is popularly known as consolidation. If you are trying to learn something, you will most likely understand better after some good sleep.
Sleep Deprivation can cause Weight Gain
Individuals who experience sleep deprivation tend to have more weight than those that get enough sleep. In fact, lack of sleep is one of the major causes of obesity. This is because people with poor sleep have a greater appetite, which makes them consume more calories. In addition to this, lack of sleep is believed to disrupt how appetite hormones operate, leading to poor appetite regulation.
Sleep Improves an Athlete’s Performance
If you are an athlete, one great way to improve your performance is to get some good sleep. A research conducted in Stanford University showed that players who at least got over 9 hours of sleep for about 8 weeks, improved their performance and levels of stamina. Therefore, sleep can go a long way in enhancing your speed, mental strength, reaction time, accuracy, and overall performance.
Sleep can Help Prevent Certain Diseases
Sleep duration and quality can have a significant effect on numerous health risk factors. Some of these conditions can cause chronic diseases, including heart disease. Studies show that individuals who have poor sleep have a greater risk of stroke and heart disease than those that get an average of 7 hours a sleep a night.
Sleep can Lower Your Stress Levels
Stress and sleep are closely related, as most people tend to lack sleep when stressed. Therefore, sleep is a good remedy for stress. Moreover, sleep can help prevent depression. It can really assist a moody individual to decrease their anxiety. Sleep simply helps you achieve emotional stability. Consider getting some good sleep when feeling stressed, and you should get up the next day feeling better.
How Much Sleep is Optimal?
Although research cannot tell the exact amount of hours you need to sleep, there are certain recommended numbers that you should take into consideration. However, while doing this, you need to pay close attention to your own desires by analyzing your feeling on different levels of sleep. Ask yourself questions like; are you highly productive when you sleep for eight hours? Or do you get into high gear after sleeping for six hours? Asking yourself such questions goes a long way in helping you come up with the right number of sleep hours for yourself.
Nevertheless, the recommended sleeping hours for adults range between 7 and 9 hours. Teenagers are required to sleep for around 8-10 hours, while children below 13 years should sleep for 10-13 hours. For the best results, consider sticking to a specific sleep schedule, evaluating your bedroom for the best conditions, and practicing a relaxing bedtime ritual.
As seen in this article, sleep is very important to a person’s health, and therefore you should make it a priority. Just like any other activity you undertake during the day, you ought to give sleep its own time and schedule. If you are having issues such as prolonged insomnia, gasping during sleep, leg cramps, or snoring, you should consider reaching out to your healthcare provider for medical assistance.