The Importance of getting sleep

The Importance of getting sleep

There are so many fun events and activities to enjoy here around Orlando. But at the end of the day, we all agree it can be exhausting. Take a look at why catching a few zzzs can really help you.

Why Getting Sleep is so Important

Sleep is an important part of your daily routine—you spend about one-third of your time doing it.  Quality sleep – and getting enough of it at the right times — is as essential to survival as food and water.  Without sleep, you can’t form or maintain the pathways in your brain that let you learn and create new memories, and it’s harder to concentrate and respond quickly.

How Much Sleep Do You Need?

Your need for sleep and your sleep patterns change as you age, but this varies significantly across individuals of the same age.  There is no magic “number of sleep hours” that works for everybody of the same age.  Babies initially sleep as much as 16 to 18 hours per day, which may boost growth and development (especially of the brain).

 

School-age children and teens on average need about 9.5 hours of sleep per night.  Most adults need 7-9 hours of sleep a night, but after age 60, nighttime sleep tends to be shorter, lighter and interrupted by multiple awakenings.  Elderly people are also more likely to take medications that interfere with sleep.

Dreaming

Everyone dreams.  You spend about 2 hours each night dreaming but may not remember most of your dreams.  Its exact purpose isn’t known but dreaming may help you process your emotions.  Events from the day often invade your thoughts during sleep.

People suffering from stress or anxiety are more likely to have frightening dreams.  Dreams can be experienced in all stages of sleep but usually are most vivid in REM sleep.  Some people dream in color, while others only recall dreams in black and white.

Sleep Can Boost Your Immune System

When your body gets the sleep it needs, your immune cells and proteins get the rest they need to fight off whatever comes their way — like colds or the flu. And according to the well-rested sleep specialists over at the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, proper sleep can also make vaccines more effective, which is obviously a plus.

Sleeping Can Increase Productivity

You may think you’re wowing your boss by burning the midnight oil but putting off a good night’s rest could be having an adverse effect at work or school. In fact, sleep has been linked to improved concentration and higher cognitive function, both of which can help you be successful at work.

But one restless night can leave you feeling frazzled, making it more likely that you’ll make mistakes that a pot of coffee won’t be able to fix. Speaking of coffee, the more tired you feel, the more likely you are to reach for that afternoon cup. And while that may seem to fix the afternoon crash problem you experience, the extra caffeine late in the day could set you up for another sleepless night. Talk about a counterproductive cycle.

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