Deep sleep is an important part of the sleep cycle necessary for optimal health and well-being. It's a phase of sleep when brain functions shut down, leaving you feeling rested and revitalized. The length of deep sleep can vary from person to person, but how much deep sleep is normal?
The average adult typically gets between one and two hours of deep sleep per night. During this period, the body is in a state of maximum relaxation, which allows it to replenish the energy it used up during wakefulness. Here you can find out what other sleep phases there are and how too much or too little deep sleep becomes noticeable.
How much deep sleep is normal and why are there different sleep phases?
Sleep is complex and a very elaborate process. The human body goes through a certain number of sleep cycles per night. Each sleep cycle consists of four sleep phases, which are adapted to our nocturnal needs and ensure extensive nocturnal recovery. These phases are usually sequential and each last between five and 30 minutes. The first part is the light sleep stage, in which body movements and sometimes even breathing slow down.
This is followed by the deep sleep stage, which is considered to be the most important part of the sleep cycle. In this phase the body is completely relaxed and no movement or other muscular activity can take place. During this phase, brain activity slows down and body temperature drops. In the third phase, which is called the stage of dream sleep, brain activity is increased again. This part of the sleep cycle is usually very short (about 10 minutes) and allows the body to relax and regenerate.
In the final phase, the REM phase, brain activity increases again, giving rise to various dreams. This is also the phase when the brain increases its alertness and the body temperature rises again. The REM phase is usually the longest phase of the sleep cycle and can last up to an hour.
What happens if you don't get enough deep sleep?
Deep sleep is a regenerative phase that is essential for mental and physical health. If a person gets too little deep sleep, their bodily functions can be disrupted and they may not be able to recover adequately. It's important to note that everyone's need for different amounts of deep sleep. Some people require more deep sleep than others, so it's important to listen to yourself. If you don't get enough deep sleep, you may notice some of the following symptoms:
- Tiredness and exhaustion
- Difficulty concentrating
- Inability to concentrate
- Memory problems
- Mood swings
- Loss of appetite
- High blood pressure
In addition, a lack of deep sleep can also weaken the immune system and increase the risk of certain diseases, including cardiovascular disease. It can also lead to an increased risk of injuries, accidents and misconduct.
Why are my deep sleep phases too short and how can I counteract this?
A lack of deep sleep can be caused by a variety of factors, including stress, sleep disorders, irregular sleeping habits, alcohol consumption, caffeine, and a poor sleeping environment. To ensure you get enough deep sleep, try to establish a regular bedtime and make the sleeping environment as quiet and comfortable as possible. Eating a healthy diet and regular exercise can also help improve sleep cycles.
A balanced sleeping climate can also become a game changer for better sleep. Thermoregulating bedding, such as that from SleepCOOL, can compensate for the changed body temperatures in the individual sleep phases. In this way, the body has to sweat less, which relieves it. At the same time, the sleeping person finds rest and does not toss and turn in bed constantly being covered and uncovered. If even that doesn't improve your sleep, it would be wise to consult a doctor.