It doesn’t take much more than missing out on one night of sleep to begin to wonder just how long someone can function without sleep. There’s no doubt that a few hours of missed sleep diminishes your ability to function at optimal levels. A full night without sleep can leave you disoriented, light-headed, and extremely irritable.
Excessive sleepiness, particularly excessive daytime sleepiness, is the hallmark sign of hypersomnia. Hypersomnia can also be characterized by prolonged sleep at night. Up to 40 percent of people experience symptoms of hypersomnia at one time or the other, reports WebMd. Some people inflicted with this sleep disorder have trouble functioning at work and school and interacting with family, friends, and in other social situations.
Lack of sleep can do more than make you grumpier than Oscar the Grouch. It can have an impact on your immune system, according to a study conducted by the Surrey Sleep Research Centre. Researchers found that poor sleep quality for just one week could impact hundreds of genes related to metabolism, response to stress, and our immune system, which helps to protect us from illness and disease.
Not only is it disturbing to your sleep partner, but snoring can lead to fatigue, moodiness, irritability, reduced ability to focus, and over time, sleep deprivation. Luckily, these days, there are a number of things that you can do to reduce or even eliminate your snoring, including a stop snoring pillow.
There are 5 distinct sleep stages, with REM sleep being one of them. Most people fall into the REM sleep stage nightly, and many experience it four or five times each night.
What is REM Sleep?
REM stands for rapid eye movement, and is characterized by random, fast-darting movements of the eyes. While the amount of time you spend in REM sleep varies depending on your age, most adults spend up to 25 percent of their total sleep time in REM sleep. On the other hand, newborns spend more than 75 percent of their sleep time in REM sleep.
Getting the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep each night may seem like a long lost memory, let alone a luxury. But not getting enough sleep is known to have health consequences. Accumulating research suggests that sleep deprivation, even in the short term, could pave the way for anxiety, weight gain, insulin sensitivity, stroke and heart disease, memory impairment, hypertension and, well, you get the picture. Sleep deprivation is not okay.
Talk about zero motion transfer. Have you ever seen the late night television commercial that features a glass of red wine on one side of the bed and an attractive young pajama clad woman jumping up and down on the other side? Were you surprised that the wine glass didn’t seem to notice the action on the other side of the mattress? By now, the commercial is an old standard in television history, but many people still find the idea of a bed where that could happen as one that’s just too good to be true – especially people who are constantly awakened during the night by a partner who sleeps fitfully or wakes frequently for bathroom trips or midnight snacks.
Most people are surprised to learn night terrors — or often called sleep terrors — impact a surprising number of adults. While the condition is most commonly associated with children between the ages of three and twelve, it is also known to affect adults. The exact causes of night terrors are relatively unknown, though adults that experience them often find that there is a genetic predisposition to do so. Sometimes they are attributed to post traumatic stress — especially when night terrors impact soldiers coming home from war and victims of violence. According to the Mayo Clinic, most night terrors in children will cease by the time the child is in his or her adolescence.
Everyone needs a good night’s sleep each and every night. Unfortunately, for a large segment of the population that is a rare commodity. While there are some who would argue that the time spent sleeping is time you cannot enjoy some of the more entertaining aspects of life, sleep actually improves the quality of your life and may even help improve your life expectancy. If you’re having trouble sleeping, keeping a sleep diary can help you manage your sleep a little better now and in the future.
Benefits of Adequate Sleep
There are many benefits that you get from a proper amount of sleep that most people don’t really understand until after they’ve gone through a fairly significant period of sleep deprivation at least once. As you age, the side effects of a sleepless night become much more pronounced and harder to overcome. These benefits include: improved mood and temperament, a brain that’s more receptive to learning, improved immunity, better alertness, increased balance, and more energy.