Beyond Rest

Are you still feeling drowsy even after a good amount of rest? Are you browsing the internet before going to bed? Are you having trouble going to sleep? If you’ve answered a yes to these queries. This is the place where you can find your answer. Let's have a look at the stats first.

On average, more than one-third of adults sleep for less than seven hours per night. Drowsy driving is responsible for more than 6,000 fatal car crashes every year in the United States. 

After childbirth, new mothers lose 62 minutes of sleep on average, compared to 13 minutes for new fathers.

More than 50% of people who watch TV before bed get less than seven hours of sleep.

57% of teens who use technology in the bedroom, such as a laptop or smartphone, suffer from sleep problems. 

Consuming over two servings of alcohol daily for men and more than one serving per day for women can reduce sleep quality by 39%.

Hawaii has recorded the worst sleep, whereas Minnesota reported the best sleep.

These shocking revelations are backed up by research! Let’s dive deeper into the world of sleep! 

Sleep, a seemingly passive state, is far more complex than it appears. It's crucial for our physical and mental well-being, impacting everything from memory consolidation to emotional regulation.

Stages of Sleep

Our sleep cycle is not a uniform state; it's a journey through distinct stages. These stages of sleep can be broadly categorised into two main types:

Non-REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep

This phase has four stages, progressively deepening as we fall asleep. Stage 1 is a light sleep stage, followed by stages 2, 3, and 4, which are progressively deeper sleep stages where brain activity slows down significantly. Metabolism decreases by approximately 15%, while heart rate and blood pressure also decrease.

REM Sleep

This phase is characterised by rapid eye movements and increased brain activity; this stage is often associated with dreaming. It's essential for memory consolidation, learning, and emotional processing. This constitutes about 20% to 25% of total sleep in healthy adults.

Sleep StagesType of SleepOther NamesNormal Length
Stage 1NREMN11-7 minutes
Stage 2NREMN210-25 minutes
Stage 3NREMN3, slow-wave sleep (SWS), delta sleep, deep sleep20-40 minutes
Stage 4REMREM Sleep10-60 minutes

When is the Ideal Time to Catch Those Zzz's?

The ideal sleep schedule varies depending on age. However, there are general guidelines:

  • Newborns: 16-18 hours
  • Infants (4-11 months): 12-15 hours
  • Toddlers (1-2 years): 11-14 hours
  • Preschoolers (3-5 years): 10-13 hours
  • School-aged children (6-13 years): 9-12 hours
  • Teenagers (14-17 years): 8-10 hours
  • Adults (18-64 years): 7-9 hours
  • Older adults (65 years and older): 7-8 hours 

Interestingly, adults spend over half their sleep time (54%) on their sides, while back sleeping accounts for 38% and stomach sleeping only 7%

What Happens When We Sleep?

While we're slumbering, our bodies are far from inactive. Here's a glimpse into the internal processes that occur during sleep.

Cellular Repair and Restoration

Sleep is vital for cellular repair and tissue growth. It allows the body to release hormones like growth hormone, which is crucial for cell regeneration and muscle building.

Memory Consolidation

During sleep, the brain consolidates memories, transforming short-term memories into long-term ones. This process helps us retain information and learn effectively.

Emotional Processing

Sleep plays a vital role in regulating emotions. It allows the brain to process emotional experiences and regulate emotional responses.

Physical Restoration

Sleep is essential for physical restoration. It allows the body to regulate heart rate, breathing, and blood pressure.

The Health Benefits of a Good Night's Sleep

Adequate sleep is crucial for maintaining overall health and well-being. Here are some of the sleep benefits.

Boosts Immunity

Sleep strengthens the immune system, making the body more resistant to infections and illnesses.

Improves Cognitive Function

Sleep enhances cognitive function, including memory, focus, concentration, and learning.

Reduces Stress and Anxiety

Adequate sleep helps regulate stress hormones and promotes emotional well-being.

Maintaining a Healthy Weight. 

Sleep may help regulate hormones that influence appetite and metabolism, contributing to weight management. 

Sleep Deprivation

Sleep deprivation, the state of not getting enough sleep, can have detrimental effects on our health. Here are some common causes and solutions:


Stress and anxiety: These can disrupt sleep patterns and make it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep.

Medical conditions: Certain medical conditions, such as sleep apnea, insomnia, and narcolepsy, can interfere with sleep.

Lifestyle choices: Inconsistent sleep schedules, excessive screen time before bed, and caffeine or alcohol consumption can disrupt sleep.


Practice good sleep hygiene: Establish a consistent sleep schedule, create a relaxing bedtime routine, and ensure a comfortable sleep environment.

Manage stress: Use stress-management techniques like exercise, meditation, or yoga.

Limit screen time before bed: The blue light emitted from electronic devices can interfere with sleep.

Seek professional help: If sleep problems persist, consult a healthcare professional to rule out any underlying medical conditions and develop personalised solutions.

Now you know the importance of sleep and how it is related to our physical and mental well-being. Keep these things in mind to practice a better sleep schedule. Remember, prioritising sleep is not a luxury; it's an investment in your health and happiness. Have you or any of your friends or family witnessed any sleeping disorders? How did you overcome them? Comment down below.

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Komala Rudra

Komala Rudra is a devoted mother and author who explores children's behavior and nutrition, offering valuable insights and practical guidance for parents and caregivers. Her writings aim to nurture healthy habits and stronger connections between parents and their little ones.

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