If you count sheep, or more likely, the likes on your last Instagram post because you couldn’t fall asleep, it’s time to reconsider your sleeping habits. Humans spend almost 30% of their lives sleeping. Despite this, sleeping remains somewhat of a mystery. However, we do know that sleep is deeply connected to our mental and physical health. Here are the top five sleep myths debunked:
1.Snoring Is Completely Harmless
Loud snoring is more than an annoying trait, it’s one of the most common symptoms of sleep apnea, a disorder where breathing is frequently interrupted during sleep. There are over 22 million Americans who suffer from a lack of restorative sleep, yet many people are never treated for sleep apnea. Left untreated, sleep apnea not only lowers your quality of life but also highers your risk of other health conditions.
2.The Older You Are, The Less Sleep You Need
Adults of all ages need around seven to nine hours of sleep to function at optimal levels. Sleep patterns can change with age and cause older adults to wake up more frequently during the night. Because they end up sleeping less at night, many adults need more sleep during the day and take naps.
3.The More Sleep, The Better
While it may seem counterintuitive, oversleeping is linked to many major health problems such as diabetes, depression, and heart disease. It can also cause headaches and increase the risk for being overweight. If you notice yourself sleeping more than usual, it’s a good sign to visit a doctor or sleep specialist.
4.It Doesn’t Matter When You Sleep
Our bodies follow a natural rhythm of waking and sleeping that follows the sunrise and sunset. However, between our careers, families, and friends, we don’t always do our snoozing during the night. While some missed sleep here and there isn’t something to be worried about, shifting your sleep schedule long term isn’t a healthy option. Employees who work night-shift jobs often experience lower quality sleep because of the disruption to their circadian rhythm. They’re at higher risk for depression and diabetes.
5.Your Body Can Adapt to Less Sleep
Between a career, friends, and family, who has time for sleeping? It’s tempting to believe that caffeine is enough to power through a day after a poor night’s sleep, but science says the opposite. As much as we’d like to think we can train our bodies or minds to need less sleep, chronic insufficient sleep, of five hours or less, is associated with a myriad of unfavorable consequences.
Sweet Dreams Are Made of These
A good night’s sleep is essential to mental and physical health. If you suspect you or a loved one may have a sleep disorder, learn more about it here, and schedule a visit to be evaluated at Whitney Sleep Center. Get better sleep: contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website.