Sleep is one of the luxuries you get in life and you may wonder if anything could go wrong with having too much of something that is so good. Most people tend to sleep longer, especially over the weekends, in order to rejuvenate their over-tired bodies but this just results into more fatigue. Nothing can get more frustrating than this; sleeping longer only to wake up feeling more tired the next day. In as much as a good night’s sleep is essential for your health, oversleeping on the other hand is linked to medical problems such as increased risk of death, obesity and heart attacks.
But just how much is too much sleep?
The number of hours someone chooses to sleep usually depends on an individual. The amount of sleep may also vary in your lifetime depending with your age and activity levels as well as your state of health. It is typical for someone who is ill to have increased need of sleep as compared to a healthy person. However, despite this contrast, experts advise that an adult needs between seven to eight hours of sleep every night. Anything over this is oversleeping, which usually feels like a hangover that scientists term as sleep drunkenness.
Sleeping too much may actually be a medical disorder where you suffer from extreme sleepiness throughout the day which translates into long periods of sleep at night. But most commonly, you sleep for longer hours as an attempt to reward yourself.
Why is oversleeping making you more tired?
According to experts, an average person will undergo 5 sleep cycles in a night which are approximately 90 minutes long each. This translates to a total of 450 minutes per night which is basically about seven and a half hours. The stage of sleep in which you wake up has a major effect on the sleep hangover. There are stage one to four and the fifth is REM. It is much easier to wake up from the first and second stage of sleep, followed by REM. It is however hardest to wake up from sleep in stage three and four.
When you sleep for two or three more hours than you usually do, chances are that you will wake up in REM or stage three or four of your sleep. This means that you’ll wake up feeling groggier.
Your sleep-wake cycle always follows a regular pattern and once you interfere with it by sleeping too much, then the pattern shifts. Thus, your body clock will start telling “the wrong time”, and you will feel this in form of lethargy, fatigue and a sleep cycle that is irregular.
How can you avoid this?
- Always go to bed and wake up at the same time everyday. This ensures you have a regular sleep pattern that will not result in you getting tired when you wake up.
- Try and schedule morning exercises as opposed to evening ones.
- Avoid alcohol and caffeine just when you are about to sleep.
Always stick to the number of hours you need to sleep even if you are tired and it is on a weekend.