After a long and hard day working, we often crave our beds and a good night’s sleep. Sleep is actually one of the most important parts of the day for our body, as it allows it to rejuvenate and recharge ahead of the next day. Without it, we simply wouldn’t function the way we do. It helps to avoid more than just being tired, we dodge serious health issues both mentally and physically by having a good rest.
Whilst we sleep, there are many important mental and physical process that we go through. It can help to improve our brain functionality, as well as our emotional wellbeing, and also helps to aid our muscle recovery.
Research has suggested that we actually need between 7 and 8 hours of sleep a night to function at our full capacity, allowing our brain and body to be fully functional the next day.
What happens during the sleep process?
Whilst our bodies rest during sleep, we are conserving energy, decreasing our blood pressure, body temperature, heart rate and breathing. Our brain does remain active, it begins logging memory and restores your day to day mental functions. Also, if you have been to the gym or done any physical exercise, our muscles grow and repair whilst we sleep.
There are five stages:
Stage 1, Light Sleep: The first stage of sleep is where we slowly transition between being asleep and being awake. We are very easily roused during this stage, and our eyes are moving slowly.
Stage 2, Eye Movement Stops: Our eye movement completely ceases, and this is where we encounter light dreaming.
Stage 3, Deep Sleep: During this stage we become very hard to wake, and the temperature of our body rapidly reduces.
Stage 4, Deep Sleep: Our temperature continues to reduce, and the energy used by our brain starts to decrease. This is also when the sleepwalking phenomenon occurs.
Stage 5, Rapid Eye Movement (REM): Our eyes begin to move rapidly, and this is when you find most dreams will occur. Our heart rate and blood pressure starts to increase, and our limbs and muscles become paralyzed.
What will happen if I don’t sleep enough?
Lack of sleep is actually one of the most dangerous things you can do to your body. The name for this is sleep debt. So essentially, if you miss out on an hours sleep every night, you’d be in a sleep debt of 7 hours a week.
This can actually cause you some serious harm, especially if it happens on a regular occasion. A lack of sleep can lead to health implications, and you could find yourself suffering from the following:
A lack of sleep is incredibly dangerous, and this is called sleep debt. So, as an example, if you lost an hour of sleep a night, you’d have a total sleep debt of around 7 hours after a week.
- Excessive tiredness in the daytime
- Headaches and difficult focusing
- Poor memory logging
- Mental health issues (anxiety/depression)
- Chronic health issues
- Mistakes made at work
These are just some of the issues that a lack of sleep can cause. So, hopefully you can see how important it is to take some time out, and ensure your bodies are fully rested and recuperated. So, get into bed, get yourself cosy, and allow yourself the night’s sleep you deserve!