How Much Deep Sleep Do You Need?

How much sleep you get a night?  I average about 8 hours a night but I wake up tired every morning.  My sleep time is within the National Sleep Foundation’s recommended hours of 7 to 9 hours for adults.   It turns out that the quality of sleep is much more important than the amount of hours.   Despite the normal amount of hours, poor sleepers tend to be tired during the day and this can have a negative effect on your health.  Recently I bought a sleep tracker so I could track the quality of my sleep.

Your body goes through several stages when you are sleeping.  The first phase is when you fall asleep but you can easily wake up.  You will be in a light sleep in the second stage until you enter into your deep sleep phase.  Also called REM.  This cycle will repeat itself throughout the evening.

Deep Sleep

What happens to your body during deep sleep?  Your organs will detox, your body will replace cells, and your body will heal wounds, etc.   This will help you recharge for the next day and stay healthy.   Experts recommend that about 20% of your overall sleep should be deep sleep.  If you are sleeping 8 hours your deep sleep should be 1 hour and 36 min.   I average about 1 hour and 20 minutes of deep sleep time per night.

Tips on how you can prepare for deep sleep

  • Keep a reliable schedule: Try to go to sleep at the same time every night (regardless if it is a weekday or weekend)
  • Make a wind-down routine to help you relax before bed
  • Aim to stop your work at least 60-90 minutes before bed and try not to look at your computer or phone.  Blue light can disrupt your circadian rhythm.
  • Keep the bedroom dark to help signal your body that it is time for bed
  • Evaluate the temperature of your room. Your bedroom should be cool, between 60 and 67 degrees
  • Avoid big meals late in the evening.  Large meals can cause discomfort and indigestion and will have a negative effect on your sleep.

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