Our daily routine may often cause us to lie in bed and wonder: sleeping or napping? Doctors say sleeping as new research indicates that depriving us of sleep may have serious consequences on our health systems.
Sleep habits have been recently put under investigation because scientists believe these can be signs of illnesses and health affections. In their opinion, people should pay more attention to their sleeping hours and see whether they get at least six hours of sleep per night or not. If they don’t they should look for medical solutions to their problems as quickly as possible.
Charles Czeisler, the lead author of the study and physician at the Division of Sleep and Circadian Disorders from the aforementioned hospital claims sleeping too little or too much is not good for a person’s health. He backed up his declaration with the findings of a UK study showing that people who sleep more than nine hours per night have 46% higher chances of getting a stroke.
At the opposite pole, we find restless individuals, whose health could be severely affected by sleep deprivation. According to Czeisler, these persons often exhaust themselves causing their immune systems to become vulnerable to other diseases.
Trying to make up for all the sleep lack in one single day won’t do either in the expert’s opinion. On the contrary, people may feel more exhausted because of the huge difference of hours. Czeisler has explained that the body perceives these changes the same way it does with time zone differences from Boston to Paris. People tend to become even more tired and they enter a vicious cycle that further prevents them from leading a healthy lifestyle.
The author of the study has further noticed during his vast medical experience that some people tend to make up for the sleep loss by taking 2 or 3-hour naps in the afternoon. This practice is once again highly non-recommended because individuals can no longer rest themselves properly at night.
A 2013 survey conducted in the United States has offered insights on people’s sleeping habits. The study presupposed the observation of 16,000 respondents to find out the influence that naps could have on their overall health systems. Results indicated that naps should not be longer than 20 or 30 minutes; otherwise, sleeping cycles (Rapid Eye Movement and the Slow-Wave Sleep) could be disrupted.
People who often take long naps in the afternoon, regardless of how long they sleep at night, should go through a medical checkup. This need may be, in fact, fatigue stemming from other illnesses. Doctors need to determine whether naps are a consequence or a cause of another health affection.
We may, thus, conclude, based on what has been previous stated that maintaining consistent sleep habits is the best solution to avoid health problems and insomnia.
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