When you’re more rested, you’re more likely to make healthier lifestyle choices compared to when you’re tired.
How much sleep do I need?
There are many factors that will contribute to the amount of sleep each individual needs but it mainly depends on your age.
- Babies typically sleep for about 17 hours
- Children need approximately 9 to 10 hours sleep
- Adults need about 8 hours sleep
- Older people typically still need 8 hours of sleep however they will often only have one period of deep sleep during the night
These hours are only recommendations and are based on the average person, some people will need more and some will need less.
Stages of Sleep
Sleeping is a complex process with 4 different stages that make up a sleep cycle.
When we first fall asleep we enter non-rapid eye movement sleep (NREM). This is divided into three stages, with each becoming progressively deeper.
Stage 1 and 2 are light phases of sleep, from which we can be easily roused.
Stage 3 becomes deeper, and if woken up, we can feel disorientated.
Stage 4 is known as rapid eye movement sleep (REM), the stage at which we dream.
Each sleep cycle lasts around one and a half hours, and in order to feel fully rested and refreshed when we wake up, we must experience all four stages. A full night’s sleep will include of five or six cycles, while a disturbed, restless night consists of fewer.
NHS Better Health
If you're having trouble sleeping, the NHS Better Health website has some useful information and tips.
The Sleep Charity
The Sleep Charity has a range information and support available to help with sleep issues.