Sleep is an essential part of our lives and studies suggest that a healthy adult requires a minimum of 7-9 hours of sleep per night. However, sleeping for 8 hours in just 4 is only a myth and there is no possible way to achieve this far from reality dream.In a world obsessed with speed, slowing down for a restful sleep is a luxury. Sleep is an essential phenomenon that affects the physical and mental health of an individual. Lack of proper sleep can have several health issues whereas sleeping well helps your body repair itself and boost immunity.
Studies suggest that proper sleep governs our happiness and misery, strength and weakness, virility and sterility, knowledge and ignorance, and life and death. The art of putting your body at rest and your mind at peace is a good practice that is extremely beneficial for an individual in the long run.
In case you are seeking an answer to how to sleep well, you have reached the right place.
How much sleep does a healthy adult require?
Sleeping well doesn’t only make you feel good but also improves your overall health. Most adults need 7-9 hours of sleep every night to stay healthy. However, the amount of sleep varies from person to person depending on their age group. Children and teens require even more than 9 hours of sleep to stay active and healthy.
The average adult requires 7-9 hours of sleep every night, and this duration could vary from person to person. Studies suggest that people who exercise regularly need a higher amount of sleep to recover and regenerate from the additional amount of physical activity and stress their bodies go through.
Cutting short on your sleep isn’t a good idea but busy life schedules sometimes lead to inadequate sleep. The more nights spent sleeping less results in more sleep debt accumulation.
There is no way to sleep less and be more energetic but there are some practices that can be followed to cope with the sleep debt that you may have accumulated:
Some physical activity – Light exercise can help stimulate blood flow to your brain making you feel more awake. But remember to keep it light, heavy exercise might make you feel even more tired.
Get off your screens – Avoid using your mobile phone, laptops, iPads, and TV screens at least half an hour before bed.
Favorable sleep environment – Keep your room cool and dark. Bright lights may interfere with your sleep. A well-maintained temperature proves ideal for the most comfortable sleep.
Healthy diet – Eating a well-balanced and healthy diet provides you with more energy throughout the day. You may also try eating foods that help you sleep better before bed. A great example is walnuts which are the best food source of melatonin.
Most adults require a minimum of 7 hours of sleep to wake up feeling refreshed and rested. Cutting short on sleep increases your risk of several health issues such as diabetes, blood pressure, or cardiovascular diseases.
Sleeping less than 7-8 hours is not enough to perform well. It hampers your communication, planning, and decision-making skills. Therefore, it is advised to spend some time in the sunlight, take short naps during the day, and perform light activities to increase your energy in case you are running short on sleep.
Are 4 hours of sleep enough?
The answer is NO! For most people, sleeping just for 4 hours isn’t enough. To wake up feeling refreshed and restored, it is essential to get adequate sleep for at least 7 hours.
In today’s busy world, people don’t have the time to pause. Many try taking shortcuts and try to hack their sleep and expect to wake up feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. But, waking up refreshed and rested after just a few hours of sleep is not possible. Therefore, it is suggested to take quality sleep for at least 7-8 hours to wake up feeling rested and restored.
However, fewer sleep hours can sometimes be compensated if you are getting quality sleep. Your sleep quality determines how rested you feel when you wake up and thus, improving the quality of your sleep helps reduce the time you spend in bed.
Quality sleep Vs Quantity Sleep
Rather than focus on the number of hours spent in bed, one should pay attention to how well they are sleeping. It is not necessary that the time spent in bed only results in sleep, rather it can result in sleepless nights, tosses and turns, leaving you to feel lethargic, unproductive, and tired the next day.
Sleeping just for 7 hours but sleeping well is far better than sleeping for 9 hours and waking up multiple times being restless the whole night. The quality of your sleep determines how refreshed and rested you wake up.
Feeling lethargic and sleepy during the day, falling asleep while watching TV, feeling lazy in the afternoon, and having a hard time waking up in the morning are some of the signs of sleep deprivation, which is often a result of bad quality sleep.
How to sleep less and feel more productive
It is natural to feel lethargic, unproductive, and sluggish the next day if you haven’t slept well the night before. There is no possibility of having more energy and feeling more productive with less sleep time but there are several cures to it. There are many things that can be done in order to combat sleep deprivation.
Sleeping less and not having enough sleep results in serious side effects like mood swings, irritability, poor decision making, weakened immune system, frequent illness, and many more.
We understand that it might not be possible to get a complete 8-hour sleep each night but it is necessary to follow the required tips and suggestions to at least compensate for the sleep deficit that has happened the night before. Improving your sleep quality is the most important task at hand.
How to get good quality sleep?
Following a regular sleep schedule helps get proper sleep.
Doing some kind of physical activity or exercise helps prevent insomnia like symptoms
Caffeine intake should be avoided at least a few hours before going to bed. It is more beneficial to avoid caffeine entirely.
Stress management is also an important factor for good sleep. Take proper consultations if you are having trouble sleeping due to stress.
Having chamomile tea before bed is a good practice as it has soothing properties to help induce sleep, serving as a perfect warm beverage for bedtime.
Health and sleep are interconnected
Sleep is an important phenomenon of life and affects the physical & mental state of an individual. The amount of sleep required by the body varies with age.
Inadequate sleep leads to daytime sleepiness, bad mood, irritability, poor concentration, and other long-term health issues. Sleep deprivation can also result in poor health as the cells repair themselves while the body is at rest. Sleep is the only time when the body restores its energy levels and also strengthens the immune system. If a person is not getting enough sleep, it will have an adverse effect on his immune system and will automatically hamper his health.
Following a proper sleep schedule and keeping the room cool are some of the factors that help reduce the time taken to wind down. It is natural to feel wound up with all our screen time and the work culture that we all follow. One of the secrets to sleeping well and getting good quality sleep is complete relaxation and the ultimate sleep environment.
Good Quality Vs Bad Quality Sleep
Falling asleep within 30 minutes of lying down, not waking up in the middle of the night, and falling back asleep within 20 minutes of waking up are the signs of good quality sleep whereas getting sleepy in the middle of the day, urge to sleep during the afternoon, feeling sluggish are some signs of poor quality sleep.
How to sleep 8 hours in 4 hours?
I’m sure you’ve guessed by now, that sleeping for 8 hours in 4 hours is a myth. Instead, you can improve your sleep quality and reduce your time of sleep by following the below practices:
Keep your cell phones or any electronic device away at least half an hour before bed.
Avoid caffeine intake before bedtime.
Choose a favorable sleep environment.
Follow a proper bedtime routine.
Take a warm pre-bedtime bath to make your body feel refreshed and relaxed.
Dim the lights before you go to bed.
Have a soothing chamomile tea to sleep well.
More power to Power Naps
Power naps are supposed to be short and sweet. The main focus of a power nap is to boost energy and make you feel refreshed and awake during the day. Mid-day naps have a lot of benefits like boosting concentration, alertness, and energy while making you feel active and energetic.
Power naps help elevate alertness, boost productivity and energy levels and help you remember things better. A short nap can help you feel more productive and less sleepy while improving your mood, memory, focus, and concentration.
If you have had a late night, you can definitely make up for that sleep deficit by taking a power nap.
Pro Tip: The ideal duration of a power nap is 20-30 minutes. If you exceed that duration, you often feel more tired and lethargic despite sleeping.
So, what are you waiting for? Look for a comfy corner, grab an eye mask and wind down for that extremely powerful power nap!
Sleeping less, feeling more productive?
Many of us wonder if we can trick ourselves into sleeping less and feeling equally productive. Let us stop you there and say no, this is just not possible. An ideal sleep time that is required by a healthy adult is around 7-8 hours and anything less than that is going to have an adverse effect on the mental and physical state of an individual.
Sometimes it is okay to sleep less but even that requires compensation. Sleeping less on a regular basis is not a good practice in the long run. A sleep-deprived person is likely to have various health issues and is more prone to falling ill as sleep also has a direct link to our immune system.
The quality of your sleep also determines how well you perform during the day and how productive you are when you wake up. Improving the quality of sleep can definitely help reduce the number of hours spent in bed.
However, even if you have a grip on the quality of your sleep, sleeping less than what is usually recommended can be damaging to your overall health. You may be able to do it for some days, but eventually, it will start causing trouble.
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