How Much Sleep Do I Need to Get Each Night?

 

The average person needs to get between 7-9 hours of sleep each night. When you get enough rest, your body can enter a restorative state that encourages healing, promotes energy, and balances your metabolism.

Sleep requirements are variable. Some people can get six hours of rest or less nightly and feel refreshed. Others need 10-11 hours nightly to ensure their health receives the most support.

Age is another issue. Children typically need more sleep than adults. Older people may need less rest than younger individuals. Most people can figure out their needs by listening to their bodies and following the natural patterns of their circadian rhythm.

What Happens If I Don’t Get Enough Sleep?

About one-third of adults are not getting enough sleep each night. When that happens as part of a regular habit, these outcomes can develop.

1. You can get sick more often.

When you aren’t getting enough sleep, your body cannot fight off illnesses as effectively. That makes it easier to get sick because your immune system is less effective. The high levels of fatigue can be so disruptive that it feels like an impossible task to get out of bed.

2. Your heart health can suffer.

If your sleep habits put you outside of the healthy zone, it can put additional stress on your heart. People who get less than five hours or more than nine increase their chances of developing heart disease or experiencing a stroke.

3. Your risk of cancer increases.

People who have shortened sleep cycles experience higher rates of prostate, colorectal, and breast cancer. Individuals who work overnight shifts tend to bear the most considerable burden on this issue, but getting at least seven hours nightly can help mitigate the problem.

4. You struggle to think or be creative.

When you don’t get enough sleep each night, your brain functions operate at reduced levels. It becomes much harder to think and make decisions when you experience high fatigue levels. Problem-solving gets worse, creative energies diminish, and your reasoning skills worsen. When you have chronic insomnia, it becomes easier to forget things because of the impact this issue has on memory and learning.

5. You can gain weight.

The people who get the least amount of sleep each night tend to have the highest risk factors for obesity. When your body doesn’t get enough rest to reset its energy levels, you crave high-calorie, instant-delivery mechanisms for a quick boost. That means sugar, caffeinated drinks, and other unhealthy items. When you consume too many of them, the extra calories work to expand the waistline.

6. Your skin suffers.

People who don’t get enough sleep see changes to their skin. It develops uneven color, additional looseness, and more fine lines and wrinkles compared to those who get enough rest nightly. This issue becomes more profound for those in the 30-50 age demographic.

Getting enough sleep each night is essential for your health. It works best to have an evening routine that encourages your body to embrace its circadian rhythm. 

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