Did you think that counting sheep would help you sleep faster? If your answer is “yes”, then you need to think again!
This common myth was busted by scientific research that proved that counting actually makes falling asleep slower.
There are numerous such pervasive myths that are either homespun opinion, folk wisdom, WhatsApp rumours or just tales. While many of the sleep mysteries are yet to be solved, science has helped debunk some common sleep myths –
1. Myth: If you’re getting by with very limited shut-eye, then you are not sleep deprived.
Truth: We are creatures of habit. Consistently sleeping lesser will adapt the body. However, this doesn’t mean that you’re performing optimally with limited sleep. Even when you don’t feel physically tired, your brain registers it. A night of bad or insufficient sleep doesn’t just mean being tired, but you’ll be more likely to forget things, have trouble concentrating and getting agitated. Don’t miss the smaller signs, they might be the beginning of trouble!
Truth: There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to sleep. The National Sleep Foundation recommends that healthy adults should aim for seven to nine hours of sleep, but eight is not the magic number. The idea is to get quality sleep, on the right foam mattress, which matters much more than the duration.
Truth: As much as we like to believe that this myth is a fact, those extra sleeping hours on weekends are not helpful. Bingeing on sleep is not a well-constructed sleep. It won’t be an exaggeration if we call it having a jet lag every weekend. Like mom said, a routine and consistency is the best way.
4. Myth: Drinking alcohol will help you catch more zzz’s
Truth: Common wisdom says that since alcohol is a natural sedative and depressant, so it should help you sleep better. Whilst it might help you fall asleep faster, as the alcohol is metabolised through your body during the night, your sleep becomes progressively lighter, increasing the chances of waking up and thus sleep quality becomes poor. Keep the booze away, simple!
Truth: While sleep patterns may vary, as we age, but the core remains the same. The CDC recommends that same hours of sleep for people between ages 18 to 60. Senior people may experience interrupted sleep through the night, but their sleep requirement is no less than younger adults. Remember how grandpa napped at mid-day. That is because, they need to complete their sleep.
Truth: There is a reason why naps are called “power naps”, as they are useful in promoting wakefulness and improving efficiency. When you rest on an orthopedic mattress, it can boost the ability to process information, and take decisions.
Truth: Our body rests during sleep, however, the brain stays active. Amazing, right! However, our mind does get ‘recharged’ while it continues to control different body functions, including breathing. Usually, there are two sleep states, REM (rapid eye movement) and non-REM, in 90-minute cycles. FYI, even in the deepest non-REM sleep, our mind is constantly processing information.
The bottom line is to listen to your body; don’t miss the telltale signs. Every person’s sleep requirement is genetically pre-determined, some people need a little more, and some little less. Continue to love your sleep like the SleepyCat family, and don’t miss on it for frugal reasons.