Interesting facts about Sleep
- During a normal night's sleep, there are five different stages of sleep – and each of them is quite different from the other four.
- When we are sleeping deeply, our breathing, our heart rate and blood pressure reach their lowest levels of the day.
- While we are dreaming, we experience REM – rapid eye movement. This is a very active time for both the body and the brain.
While we are dreaming, our brain patterns are similar to those we experience while being awake.
- Most adults need about eight hours of sleep to function at their best, but studies have shown that most adults don't get much more than seven.
- We sleep more lightly during the second half of the night than during the first.
- Cats sleep up to 18 hours a day, giraffes usually not more than 20 minutes.
- Your body is on a 24-hour body clock, which makes you wind down between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. and again in the three hours directly after lunch. We are really made to have siestas.
- It is more difficult to wake a child than an adult from deep sleep – often children will be disorientated and have no recollection of this later.
- Many people who suffer from insomnia suffer from anxiety and depression.
- Our large body muscles are paralysed while we sleep – most probably to stop us from doing what we are dreaming about.
- We go through four to six sleep cycles during a good night's sleep, moving through the different stages and back again.
- The average person wakes up about six times per night.
- Your body temperature falls in the early morning hours, reaches a low at about 4 a.m. and then rises again just before sunrise.
- Researchers have never been able to agree exactly why the body needs sleep, except that it is restoring to our bodies and our brains.
- Even when we are sleeping very deeply, there is still a part of us that picks up sounds and signals from the world around us. That's why parents wake up when the baby cries, but they don't hear the howling southeaster.
- Women and older people most often suffer from insomnia.