Sleep problems, especially with fast falling asleep, affect many people. Another hard night makes us wonder if it’s just problems falling asleep or already insomnia or other sleep disorders. Restful sleep is essential for maintaining health and comprehensive regeneration of the body and mind, and lack of it can lead to death faster than lack of food. How to go to sleep?
Before you start worrying that you have trouble sleeping, it is worth remembering that sleep is a very individual matter, and the need for it may change with age. How to fall asleep quickly: there is no clear answer. Some people can fall asleep quickly and 5 hours of peaceful sleep are enough, others need half an hour of bed rest and 8 hours of sleep, and some even after 10 hours they will wake up sleepless and irritable. What is most important is the quality of sleep, which is crucial in the treatment of sleep disorders and insomnia. Read our guide: how to fall asleep quickly and what to do to have a restful sleep.
How much sleep does a man need?
How much sleep you need changes at different times in your life. An infant may need up to 17 hours of sleep each day, while an older adult will benefit from just 7 hours of sleep at night. Age guidelines are a research-based suggestion. According to the National Sleep Foundation, general sleep guidelines for different age groups are:
- from birth to 3 months: from 14 to 17 hours
- 4 to 11 months: 12 to 15 hours
- 1-2 years: 11 to 14 hours
- 3 to 5 years: 10 to 13 hours
- From 6 to 13 years: from 9 to 11 hours
- 14 to 17 years: 8 to 10 hours
- 18 to 64 years: 7 to 9 hours
- 65 years and more: from 7 to 8 hours.
Everyone’s sleep needs are different, even in the same age group. Some people may need at least 9 hours of sleep at night to feel well rested, while others in the same age group may think that 7 hours of sleep is appropriate for them.
What are the stages of sleep?
When you fall asleep, your brain and body go through several sleep cycles. Now the National Sleep Foundation classifies them as follows:
- N1 (previously Stage 1): This is the first stage of sleep and is the period between waking and falling asleep.
- N2 (previously stage 2): The onset of sleep begins at this stage when you become unaware. Body temperature drops slightly, and breathing and heart rate become regular.
- N3 (formerly stages 3 and 4): This is the deepest and most regenerative stage of sleep, during which the breath slows down, blood pressure decreases, relax muscles, release hormones, regeneration occurs, and the body recovers energy.
- REM: This is the last stage of the sleep cycle. It takes about 25 percent of your sleep cycle. That’s when your brain is most active and dreams appear. During this stage, your eyes move rapidly under your eyelids. REM sleep helps increase mental and physical performance after waking up.
It takes about 90 minutes on average to complete each cycle. If you can do five cycles at night, you’ll sleep 7.5 hours. Six full cycles are about 9 hours of sleep. Ideally, you would wake up at the end of the sleep cycle instead of in the middle of it. Usually you feel more refreshed and full of energy when you wake up at the end of the sleep cycle.