It is known that it is necessary to respect a specific sleep pattern and schedule for the correct rest, development and functioning of our body. However, it is also extremely essential for mental health.
For this reason, in the following article we will talk more in depth about sleep , the necessary hours in the different stages of life, as well as the benefits and advice to meet the necessary requirement that favors our health and quality of life.
What is the dream?
Sleep in general terms is the act of sleeping, understood as the period during which the body and mind manage to rest as part of their needs .
In this sense, it is a natural and physiological function that allows the restoration of the organism’s functions, although the brain remains highly active during this process.
To highlight: Sleep is a process that contemplates the relaxation of the muscles and a decrease in consciousness and reactivity, which, in addition, its absence can cause behavioral, physiological and psychological alterations. (1)
How many hours of sleep does the body need?
There are different sleep times necessary for the good health of individuals, but these will vary depending on the stage of life in which they are. We mention below, what are the necessary and recommended hours of sleep for each of them:
In childhood , 10 to 13 hours of sleep are required for every 24 hours, which can be shared with naps. The higher demand at these ages is due to the fact that they are in the process of development.
In adolescence, sleep hours should be between 8 and 10, although they can vary and be longer. It happens that during this process, the heart rate readjusts and tells the body to sleep and get up much later than normal, producing a pattern.
The adult sleep period is between 7 and 9 hours. It is considered ideal and healthy, due to the lifestyle and the adaptability that human beings usually have to the changes and routines they face.
You should know: Shorter and repetitive periods of sleep increase the risk of long-term cognitive decline.
What are the benefits of getting adequate sleep hours?
The correct fulfillment of the hours of sleep corresponding to each stage of our life will allow fullness, health and quality of life . We mention below what are the benefits that exist when respecting the adequate hours of sleep:
1. Lowers the risk of heart disease
A study carried out by the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology mentioned that healthy lifestyle habits, including respect for and recognition of sleep hours, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by up to 65%, since the period of sleep repairs function endothelium and lowers blood pressure. (two)
Note: Cardiovascular diseases that can be prevented include myocardial infarction, cardiac arrhythmia, angina pectoris, and coronary artery disease.
2. Reduces the risk of obesity
Getting enough sleep for each stage of life has great benefits, but in the case of adulthood, getting enough sleep can limit the risk of gaining weight and therefore suffering from obesity.
Important: Studies carried out on metabolism disorders and weight gains refer to the important need to meet the average of 7 to 8 hours in adulthood, since the less hours of sleep, the greater the risk of developing obesity. and overweight. (3)
3. Stimulates normal growth and development
It happens that there is research on the growth hormone segregation peak , being this during the sleep period, specifically two hours after the beginning of it.
To highlight: The production of growth hormone occurs in the deepest phase of sleep and it is therefore that in children and adolescents it is very important to respect this physiological need. (4)
4. Increases concentration and attention
Sleeping or taking naps reduces the degree of stress present in the individual, in addition to increasing the ability to concentrate by at least 34% and allows an increase in alertness.
You should know: The University of Arizona has carried out studies that mention the decrease in longevity due to cognitive wear and tear as a consequence of not respecting the hours of sleep. (5)
5. Improves physical performance
Muscle regeneration occurs mainly during rest periods, thus allowing a balance of recovery , the greater the physical effort made and the intensity of the training, the greater the hours of sleep should be.
6. Decreased risk of depression and anxiety
A study carried out on the Relationship of sleep quality, depression and anxiety determined that the lack of sleep periods is closely linked to an increased risk of developing depressive disorders. (6)
Note: It is important that patients facing chronic diseases have healthy sleep habits and thus improve treatment receptivity.
How to sleep the necessary hours of sleep?
The hours of sleep must be a habit in the life of the individual, to ensure their correct development and health, in addition to improving their quality of life and cognitive capacity. To meet the necessary hours of sleep, we mention below a set of factors that we must take into account:
1. Set a specific schedule
Establishing a specific sleep schedule will make it easier to create a habit , so it will be easier to comply with and respect it. However, sleep needs will appear in the same time range.
2. Adapt the environment to sleep
Having a suitable environment will allow you to avoid disturbances that may appear during sleep, it is important to take into account the temperature, external noise and lighting.
3. Turn off electronic devices
Distraction factors are very influential in possible interruptions to sleep, which would easily become a problem. Therefore, keeping electronic devices turned off, from the television to the cell phone, will make sure that there will be no awakenings that disturb the rhythm of sleep.
4. Avoid consumption of stimulating drinks
Energy drinks or drinks with stimulating substances such as chocolate, tea and coffee should be avoided at least 6 hours before bedtime, since they can interfere with the habit and cause alterations in defined schedules.
5. Perform relaxation exercises
Relaxation exercises are an incredible tool that allows you to fall asleep more easily and successfully, in addition to allowing a restful and healthy sleep, which will definitely improve the results of the hours of sleep.
6. Avoid long naps during the day
Long naps are also a factor that can alter habit or defined sleep schedules, since they will produce a deep rest that will confuse the brain and have a lot of energy and alertness at times that are not necessary.
- The hours of sleep are an important factor for the proper development and functioning of our body.
- Sleep is a physiological need that must be respected since the consequences of its alterations could cause quite annoying adverse effects .
- Adequate rest allows to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and overweight, in addition to improving the physical performance of the person and stimulates growth in infants.
- A suitable environment and away from distractions such as electronic devices, will allow a full and healthy rest.
- Performing relaxation exercises will allow a greater achievement of the objectives and an increased quality of life.