Lost sleep: can we get it back?


Can you make up for lost sleep the following night? The simple answer is yes. If you have to get up early for an appointment on Friday and sleep in on Saturday, you will recover most of the lost sleep.

Sleep is a restorative activity: while you sleep, your brain lists information and heals your body. He decides what is important to keep and what can be left out. Your brain creates new pathways that help you navigate the day ahead. Sleeping also helps heal and repair your blood vessels and heart.

That said, catching up on a missed night’s sleep isn’t quite the same as sleeping like it must. When you catch up on sleep, your body needs more time to recover. According to a study by 2016 it takes four days to fully recover from one hour of lost sleep.

In addition, with screens, we lose sleep chronically instead of occasionally. This creates a “sleep deficit”, which makes it harder to catch up on sleep and increases the likelihood of sleep deprivation symptoms.

What is sleep deficit?

The time you spend sleeping is like putting money in a bank account. Whenever you don’t have enough, the money is withdrawn and must be repaid. When you suffer from a chronic sleep deficit, you can never catch up. We need about 7.1 hours of sleep per night to feel good, but 73% of us don’t hit that goal on a regular basis. This is due to many factors, such as school responsibilities, long working hours, and increased use of electronic devices like smartphones.

Many people think they can make up for the sleep lost during the weekends. However, if you oversleep on Saturday and Sunday, it will be difficult for you to get to bed on time on Sunday night. The deficit then continues the following week.

Chronic lack of sleep can lead to many health problems. It can put you at increased risk of diabetes, weakened immune system, and high blood pressure. You may also have higher levels of cortisol, a stress hormone. This can lead to anger, depression, and even suicidal thoughts. In addition, drowsiness increases the risk of falling asleep at the wheel and having an accident.

Tips to make up for lost sleep

Not everyone needs the same number of hours of sleep per night. Some people need nine hours or more, while others are happy with six hours or less. To find out how many hours of sleep you need, observe how you feel the next day after different hours of sleep.

You can also determine how much sleep you need by letting your body sleep as much as it wants for a few days. You’ll then naturally fall into your body’s best sleeping pattern, which you can continue after the experiment is over.

If you’re not getting enough sleep, here are some ways to catch up.

– Take a nap for about 20 minutes in the early afternoon.

– Sleep on weekends, but no more than two hours after your normal waking time.

– Sleep more for one or two nights.

– Go to bed a little earlier the next night.

Recover from chronic sleep debt

If you suffer from a chronic lack of sleep, the above recommendations will not help you much. Instead, you’ll need to make long-term changes.

– Go to bed 15 minutes earlier each night until that you reach your desired bedtime.

– Do not sleep more than two hours after the time you normally wake up, even on weekends.

– Keep electronics in a separate room.

– Think back to your nightly routine to see if anything is keeping you from going to bed too late.

– Stop using electronic devices two hours before bedtime.

– Make sure your bedroom is dark and cool enough.

– Avoid caffeine late at night.

– Exercise no later than three hours before bedtime.

– Avoid naps outside of naps of 20 minutes.

If these measures don’t help, or if you have other sleep problems like sleep apnea or sleep paralysis, talk to your doctor. A sleep study may be helpful in determining what is wrong.

The Benefits of Getting More Sleep When You Can

The benefits of getting enough sleep are often overlooked. You may feel like you’re wasting valuable work hours if you allow yourself reasonable rest. Yet sleep is just as important an activity as anything you do while awake.

Getting enough sleep improves learning and memory. People are generally more successful at mental tasks after a full night’s sleep. This means that if you get nine hours of sleep instead of seven, it may take you less time to get things done the next day because your brain will be sharper. By getting things done faster, it’s easier to go to bed at a reasonable time the next night.

In addition, getting more sleep can help your body stay healthy. It protects your heart and helps keep your blood pressure low, your appetite normal, and your blood sugar normal. During sleep, your body releases a hormone that promotes your growth. It also repairs cells and tissues and improves your muscle mass. Adequate sleep is good for your immune system and helps you fight infections.

Risks of accumulating lost sleep

Irregular sleep patterns can increase your risk of various diseases, including

– diabetes

– weight gain

– anxiety

– depression

– bipolar disorder

– delayed immune response

– heart disease

– memory problems

The good news is that getting enough sleep can reverse the increased risk of these diseases. It’s never too late to adopt healthy sleep habits.

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