Sleep is one of the fundamental pillars of good health as is eating healthy foods or getting enough exercise. Most often, it is the one that gets neglected or sacrificed.
During sleep, the body is recovering. It also plays a vital role in helping you regulate your emotions. Sleep deprivation can affect the body negatively.
This is what happens to your body if you don't sleep at night ‼️
1️⃣ Your immune system crashes
2️⃣ Your brain slows down
3️⃣ Your body ages faster
Since sleep is essential for so many aspects of good health, here we will be addressing some of the most common myths surrounding sleep.
Myth 1: How Long You Sleep Is All That Matters
Sleep duration is important, but that’s not all. It's not just the duration or quantity of sleep, but also the quality that matters. Sleep quality, meaning how well you sleep, is closely connected with sleep continuity and avoiding sleep disruptions.
The ability to progress through the sleep cycle normally can be hampered due to frequent awakenings in the night. This reduces the amount of time spent in the restorative sleep phase. Therefore, the goal should be to get adequate hours of uninterrupted and high-quality sleep.
Myth 2: During Sleep, Your Brain Shuts Down
Brain activity does not cease during sleep. In fact, it is one of the most active parts of the body during sleep.
The brain sorts and processes the day's information while we are asleep. During rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, brain activity increases to a level that is comparable to when a person is awake.
This pattern of activity during sleep stages is important for efficient thought, memory and emotional processing.
Myth 3: Sleeping More is Always Better
We always talk about insomnia as a sleep-related problem. However, there are problems that can arise from excessive sleep. In general, sleeping too much can be a symptom of an underlying health problem.
Although it’s true that a good night’s sleep is important for overall health, you can’t have too much of a good thing either. Excessive sleeping has been linked to numerous health issues, including depression, diabetes, heart disease, and a higher mortality rate.
As health is not a one size fits all phenomenon, we cannot have a fixed number as to how long one should sleep. Roughly 7-9 hours of quality sleep is needed for optimal health. This number could be slightly lesser or more for each individual as sleep requirements can vary from person to person.