Sleep is one of those daily activities that many of us look forward to. Nothing can beat that feeling of waking up rested and alert because we had a good night sleep. However, how much sleep do we really need? There is the traditional eight hours of sleep that we all hear of, but is that still accurate today? We will discuss the current sleep research with an attempt to figure out how much sleep we need to get.
Sleep amounts vary by stages of life
The short answer to how much sleep you need is that it depends on who you are and what stage of life we are in. The general rule is that the younger you are, the more sleep you are going to need. It is recommended that newborns get 14-17 hours of sleep and are the group that needs the most sleep. Kids in elementary school need anywhere between 9 to 15 hours of sleep, with younger kids needing more sleep than older kids. Teenagers need 8-10 hours of sleep, while once you get to adulthood at age 18, you need 7-9 hours. Seven hours of sleep is the minimum recommended sleep that you need for the rest of your life.
However, these are recommendations for a typical adult, but sleep is much more complicated than that. Sleep needs depend on who you are as a person. Every person has a personal clock, and this clock can be affected by the amount of stress you have in your life, the amount of alcohol you drink, the amount of exercise or activeness in your daily day, and other factors in your life. It is recommended that you go a week where you aren’t drinking or stressing, fall asleep sleep when you are tired, and wake up when you wake up. This is a good indication of the amount of sleep that you need.
However, we can’t always get the best night’s sleep, and when this happens, it is possible to make up for some of the side effects of not getting enough sleep. Napping can help you make up for lost sleep. Something as short as a 20-30-minute nap during the day can help you stay alert and make it through on a limited amount of sleep.
If you are finding it difficult to get your recommended amount of sleep each night, try a supplement such as melatonin. This can help you fall asleep and stay asleep longer. You might also try calming music, ensuring you have a dark room, and that you’re clearing your mind before bed by writing down your thoughts (like the next days to-do list that is on your mind.)
We all love to sleep, and it is essential to get plenty of sleep to keep us alert and focused throughout the day. However, depending on what stage of life we are in can help determine how much sleep we need. It is also depended on who we are as a person. Hopefully, though, we can all get the sleep we need, and it is an enjoyable experience.