How much sleep does a person need on average
There are five stages of sleep that rotate between non-rapid eye movement NREM and rapid eye movement REM and include drowsiness, light sleep, moderate to deep sleep, deepest sleep, and dreaming. Experts have recommended that adults gets about 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night. New research aims to identify not just how much total sleep you need — but also how much of each stage of sleep you need. Sleep stages 1, 2, and REM consist of light sleep, while 3 and 4 comprise deep sleep.SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Impact of Sleep on Health Video -- Brigham and Women's Hospital
SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: Science Explains How Much Sleep You Need Depending on Your AgeContent:
- How much sleep do we really need?
- How Much Deep, Light, and REM Sleep Do You Need?
- How Much Sleep Adults Need on Average to Be Rested
- Sleep Needs
- The rule that everyone needs eight hours of sleep is a myth
- How to Calculate When You Should Go to Sleep
- How can I get enough sleep?
- How Much Sleep Do You Need?
- How Many Hours of Sleep Do You Need?
How much sleep do we really need?
When you think of what makes up a healthy lifestyle, diet and exercise come to mind, but did getting enough restful sleep?
Some researchers consider the lack of sleep that many people get to be at epidemic levels. According to the National Institutes of Health , lack of restful sleep causes a long list of issues:. They're listed as ranges because gender has an influence, as well as lifestyle and health.
Newborns don't have an established c ircadian rhythm ; it isn't established they're months old. Infants tend to sleep in several phases throughout the day polyphasic , sleeping from 2. By around 12 months, infants start sleeping more at night.
At this point, they start to sleep more like adults in that there are no bodily movements during REM rapid eye movement sleep, which is when people dream.
Previous to 12 months, babies will move during REM sleep. Recognizing when school-age children aren't sleeping enough can be difficult as tired kids tend to not slow down, they speed up. They'll engage in behaviors that look like ADHD. This includes resisting going to bed at night, even though they're tired. Student grades and attendance can also reveal a sleep issue for your child.
Children with ADHD can cause sleep loss in children, as well as other issues such as sleep apnea when people stop breathing for periods throughout the night.
It was previously believed that sleep apnea only occurred in adults, but now the America Academy of Pediatrics recommends ask about and screen for sleep apnea in children. According to the National Sleep Foundation , circadian rhythms shift after puberty, making teens want to go to bed after 11 pm and wake up later. With teenagers having the earliest start times, they are often getting up at 5 am to be at school by 7 am, which makes it rarer that a teen will get enough sleep.
Because teens are sleep-deprived during the week, they sleep more on the weekend, which can make the problem worse. One of the top recommendations from sleep experts is to fall asleep and wake up at the same time every day. A problem that many teens share with adults is the use of back-lit devices late at night, which can prevent sleepers from getting quality sleep. Depression rates among college-aged young adults ages are high, and this age group is the most likely to have serious thoughts about suicide at 7.
Depression is often accompanied by life changes, and this period in life is often filled with changes. Sufferers of depression often suffer from insomnia, and the relationship between sleep and depression is complex.
Those who suffer from depression may have trouble getting to sleep and staying asleep, and those who don't sleep enough are more likely to be depressed, created a cycle. Anxiety is another condition that can prevent restful sleep. Anxiety rates are highest among middle-aged adults ages , and anxiety is the most common mental illness in the U.
And similar to depression, lack of sleep can trigger anxiety, and anxiety can cause a lack of sleep. Many adults aged 65 and older nap during the day because they don't get enough quality sleep at night. One of the reasons they don't sleep well is because of medical conditions such as restless legs syndrome RLS.
Symptoms occur in the evening and often during sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation , seniors have trouble sleeping for several reasons. One is the change in the phases of sleep, where many seniors spend more time in the lighter phases of sleep and less in the deeper, more restorative phases.
Sleep fragmentation waking up during the night is also common, which greatly reduces the ability to wake up well rested. Women need on average 20 more minutes per night more than men, though some women need more than that. One theory as to why is because women multitask more than men and have busier schedules, which results in their brains using more energy and therefore needing more recuperation.
If this theory is correct, then men that have complex jobs that require a lot of decision-making and lateral thinking will need more than the average male as well. Another possible reason is the monthly hormone cycle that occurs with menstruation. According to the National Institutes of Health , women do sleep more than men. However, several things can make it difficult for women to get enough quality sleep:. Pregnant women need more sleep, especially in their first trimester, which includes more sleepiness during the day.
This is due to the rise in progesterone, as well as the metabolic changes the body is going through. They also are more likely to experience parasomnias, which are u nusual behaviors that occur just before falling asleep, during sleep, or when waking up. Common parasomnias for expecting mothers are restless legs syndrome RLS , snoring, and insomnia.
Expectant mothers in their first trimester will also have more frequent bathroom visits to urinate, due to the uterus pushing on the bladder. In the second trimester , women tend to sleep better, as many of the changes have already occurred in the first trimester. However, it's not uncommon to experience leg cramps often in the calves as well as heartburn due to the uterus pushing on the stomach.
In the third trimester , sleep gets worse again due to RLS , frequent urination, anxiety about the upcoming delivery, and lower back pain. After the baby is born, new mothers will often find it easier to sleep because they're sleep deprived. Babies are often awake every hour to few hours, so mothers can't get into the deeper, restful phases of sleep, so when they get a chance to sleep, the brain will try to make up the sleep deficit as quickly as possible.
Breastfeeding is sleep-inducing because the hormone that promotes lactation, prolactin, is a soporific, or sleep-promoting. Some people believe that they can not sleep enough for several day or more and make it up when they get around to it. For many people, on a short-term basis, that looks to be true.
If you are sleep deprived during the week, you may be able to make it up during the weekend. But with long-term sleep debt, the evidence isn't good for being able to make it up. According to the Clayton Sleep Institute , research showed that six nights of sleep deprivation resulted in negative impacts on attention, daytime sleepiness, and inflammation.
After a catch-up period to make up the sleep debt, attention levels didn't catch up. Cortisol, the prime marker for inflammation, didn't decrease either. A separate study showed that chronic sleep loss results in a loss of neurons that are responsible for alertness and cognition. Another issue with sleep debt is that when you sleep too little, then sleep a lot, your circadian rhythm is disturbed. Many sleep experts believe that the number one thing you can do to start sleeping better is to fall asleep and wake up at the same time every day, regardless of whether it's a weekday or weekend.
Have a regular sleep routine that gets you well rested, and there will be no need for a feast or famine sleep routine. If you have a long-term sleep debt, experts recommend adding an extra hour or two of sleep per night, with no alarm clock, until you gradually start sleeping less. It's also a good idea to make sure that you're getting the highest quality rest by following a good sleep protocol, which includes:.
A 15 to minute nap can be a great way to help get rid of a sleep deficit. If you sleep longer than 20 minutes, you risk going into a deeper sleep, and when you wake up you could be groggy for a while.
The length of a full sleep cycle is around 90 minutes, so if you sleep for 90 minutes, you may not wake up groggy, though it may be more difficult for you to fall asleep at night. Early risers tend to want to nap around 1 pm, and late risers an hour or two later. As long as you nap early in the afternoon, and not in the evening, it shouldn't affect your ability to sleep at night. Many countries in Central and South America have afternoon "siestas," as well as several countries in Europe.
Research has suggested that people wanting to nap around 1 or 2 in the afternoon isn't necessarily the result of a blood sugar crash from lunch. The Romans in the 1st century B. Sara Mednick, author of "Take a Nap! Change Your Life," says that our circadian rhythms are programmed for one long sleep at night, and one short one in the afternoon. The first research into naps came from Jurgen Aschoff in the early s in abandoned World War II German bunkers that had no natural light.
Subjects stayed in the bunkers and were told to sleep whenever the felt tired, and they slept for one long period of 6 to 7 hours, then 12 hours later for a second period of an hour or less. Moira Junge, psychologist and spokesperson for the the Sleep Health Foundation, believes that people would be healthier if they took naps.
He says that all human beings experience a post-lunch dip whether they've eaten or not. But what you eat can make that dip more intense. Eating a carbohydrate-based lunch will make the dip worse, eating a protein-based lunch will reduce it. The younger a person is, the more sleep they require to help facilitate the development of a growing body and brain. According to the National Sleep Foundation , when a child hasn't slept enough, they may not always slow down, but they may speed up.
Their behavior may look more like symptoms of ADHD, and they'll resist going to bed. Do you know anyone that brags about not needing more than 4 or 5 hours per sleep per night? Have you wondered how much more work you could get done if you didn't need to sleep hours per night? Do you belong to company that looks at not sleeping as a badge of honor? It turns out that lack of sleep can make you a lot less productive, and only rare people can be well-rested on hours per night of sleep.
You can be sleep deprived even though you may sleep the recommended hours per night because you're not getting quality sleep. If you have any of the following problems, you're probably not getting enough restful sleep:. Many people attribute their inability to lose weight to a lack of disciple.
They feel guilty because they can't stick to a diet and exercise schedule, which can lead to emotional eating. The reality for many people struggling to lose weight is that the lack of restful sleep impacts their brain's hormone production. When you don't get enough sleep, your leptin levels go down, and as leptin is the hormone that helps you feel satisfied and stop eating, you feel the need to continue eating.
In addition to ghrelin and leptin levels, researchers at the University of California Berkeley have found that when people are tired, they're more likely to eat foods that are bad for them. This can become a vicious cycle where you don't sleep well, so you eat more food, and worse food, which may make you sleep worse. If you suspect that you have a sleep disorder , it's best to talk to your doctor.
But most people can look at a thorough sleep hygiene program and find at least a few things that they could improve on. Some of the most common mistakes that people make that reduce the amount of restful sleep are :. There are also a variety of mistakes people make with their posture and sleep position that can lead to a poor night's sleep, especially anything that prevents your spine from resting in a neutral position.
Sleep Needs by Age and Gender.
How Much Deep, Light, and REM Sleep Do You Need?
Sleep is a vital indicator of overall health and well-being. Sleep needs vary across ages and are especially impacted by lifestyle and health. The National Sleep Foundation released the results of a world-class study that took more than two years of research to complete — an update to our most-cited guidelines on how much sleep you really need at each age.
How much sleep do we really need, and what happens if we get too little or too much? We spend about a third of our lives sleeping, so you've asked an important question. The National Sleep Foundation recommends seven to eight hours of sleep for people over age 64 and seven to nine hours for ages 18 to Kids need more sleep.
How Much Sleep Adults Need on Average to Be Rested
Most adults need at least seven or more hours of sleep each night. The National Sleep Foundation NSF and a panel of 18 experts combed through more than studies to identify the ideal amount of time a person needs to sleep according to their age:. Although most men and women need about 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night, their sleep patterns are generally different. Women often sleep more than men, and they experience a lighter sleep that is more easily disrupted. Many women also have undiagnosed sleep disorders. Other causes include sleep disorders, substance abuse, depression, and medical problems like epilepsy and heart disease. Men are also more inclined than women to take sleep for granted and stay up longer than they should. If you believe you need professional advice about your lack of sleep, it's a good idea to maintain a sleep diary for about a week. This will help your doctor get an accurate picture of your sleep history.
The amount of sleep you need depends on various factors — especially your age. While sleep needs vary significantly among individuals, consider these general guidelines for different age groups:. Some people claim to feel rested on just a few hours of sleep a night, but their performance is likely affected. Research shows that people who sleep so little over many nights don't perform as well on complex mental tasks as do people who get closer to seven hours of sleep a night. Mayo Clinic does not endorse companies or products.
The quality of your sleep directly affects your mental and physical health and the quality of your waking life, including your productivity, emotional balance, brain and heart health, immune system, creativity, vitality, and even your weight. No other activity delivers so many benefits with so little effort! But even minimal sleep loss can take a substantial toll on your mood, energy, mental sharpness, and ability to handle stress.
The rule that everyone needs eight hours of sleep is a myth
Is it ok to have just four or five hours or must you get a solid eight or nine hours every night? This is a difficult question to answer as the amount of sleep a person needs depends on a lot of different factors like age, health and lifestyle. Many people think staying up through the night to get work finished or to meet a deadline means they are being more productive but the science shows the opposite is true. Without enough sleep, you are sluggish and impaired which means you work slower and make more mistakes.
If you experience excessive daytime sleepiness , you may not be getting enough sleep. How much sleep do adults need on an average night to feel rested? Learn how sleep needs change as we become older and whether or not you are getting enough to feel rested. Finally, consider other factors that might affect sleep quality, even if you are getting sufficient hours of shuteye in bed. The amount of sleep that you need is likely determined by your genetics, your age, your overall health, the various demands during your day, and other factors.
How to Calculate When You Should Go to Sleep
If you buy something through a link on this page, we may earn a small commission. How this works. Sleep is important for health. We spend around a third of our lives asleep. Sleep deprivation has been linked to a number of health conditions, including obesity.
Self-Engagement in Wellbeing Enhances Quality of Life Ensuring senior adults are actively involved in their own health and well-being is a priority for health professionals and policy makers. Combating Loneliness in Seniors Loneliness sometimes takes on a different role in the lives of seniors. Acetaminophen Toxicity. Eating Healthy to Manage Your Symptoms. Many things change as we get older.
How can I get enough sleep?
The short answer: adults need 6 to 9 hours per night. Around 7 to 7. The long answer: it depends. The amount of sleep each person needs depends on many factors, including age, health, recent physical exertion, and mental activity.
How Much Sleep Do You Need?
Many of us try to live by the mantra eight hours of work, eight hours of leisure, eight hours of rest. Conventional wisdom has long told us we need eight hours of sleep per day, but some swear they need more, and some politicians, mostly say they function fine on four or five. So is the human brain wired to require eight hours, or is it different for everyone? We asked five experts if everyone needs eight hours of sleep per day.
This is unfortunate because good sleep is just as vital to good health as eating healthy foods or getting enough exercise. Read on to learn why sleep is so important to your health and how much you should be getting each night. Sleep is more than just a time for your body and mind to rest. In fact, while you're asleep, your body is hard at work.
How Many Hours of Sleep Do You Need?