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What’s in a Good Night’s Sleep?


Counting the number of hours spent in one night in bed, may not serve as an accurate depiction of whether or not one is receiving the National Sleep Foundation’s recommended seven to nine hours of sleep a night.

A recent article on Discovery.com discussed variables, such as wake time in the middle of the night, that are not included in this figure. They suggest looking at the full picture, which is actually sleep quality and efficiency.

Since we dream in four sleep cycles, ensuring that we get more of stages 2, 3 and 4 are ideal. Some believe the first stage of sleep offers no recuperative value. Stage 2 is ideal for napping and can restore alertness. According to the Discovery.com article, stages 3 and 4 (slow wave sleep) are linked to enzyme regeneration, rebuilding proteins and healing immune functions. If REM is disrupted during these stages, memory and emotions can be affected.

For the full article and more on why sleep is more about quality vs. quantity, visit News.Discovery.com.


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