Who doesn’t love sleeping?
Here we will discuss the importance of “How Much Sleep Does a 40-year-old Adult Need”.Sleep is an indispensable drug to alleviate all your pains of the day; it is a stress reliever smoothing over the crinkles and creases left on your body by the ceaseless life.
Sleep: The Stress Reliever
You might be having an existential crisis when you start to think about the fact that you come to work every day working way more than you get paid or the fact that you don’t know what future holds for you or will you ever get out of this mundane routine to finally pursue that one thing you’ve always wanted. And while you’re thinking all this, your manager asks you to come to their office and you get rebuked for not paying attention to your work
After you manage to squeeze your way out of the office, you have to hear about the marital problems of that one sentimental coworker who never listens to your problems. All this in one day. This goes on again and again and again for the whole year or maybe your whole life, you never know. But when you come home and plop into your bed and sleep wraps you in her arms: everything is fine and nothing matters.
It’s amazing how much humans look forward to sleep where they consciously surrender to their mental entity letting it take over them, letting it make them forget everything no matter how important. But it shouldn’t come as a surprise because life is not merciful, and we, humans, deserve rest after working so hard.
But does everyone have the privilege of enjoying this much-needed rest?
According to studies, the average global working hours of an adult are around 40 to 44 hours per week. The average hours a working adult gets to sleep on weekdays are 6.8 or less. Which means that an individual gets roughly 34 hours of sleep on weekdays which is less than the average hours they work (40-44 h). This is alarming considering the possible detrimental effects of sleep deprivation
Effects of Sleep Deprivation
Lack of sleep can lead to many detrimental effects on your health. Some of them are:
- Fatigue: This one is a no-brainer, the less sleep you get, the more tired you’ll be.
- Irritability: Lack of sleep tends to trigger mood changes and you may become prone to an irritable mood all the time.
- High risk of obesity: Sleep deprivation is linked to an unhealthy weight and fat gain leading to obesity and other health complications like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and clinical depression.
- Hallucinations: If you go without sleep for a long time you may start having auditory hallucinations in which you hear something which isn’t there or visual hallucinations in which you see something which isn’t real.
- Problem concentrating: The more sleep deprived you are, the more tired you’ll be. A fatigued brain is prey to developing low attention spans.
- Memory problems: When you can’t focus on a problem clearly, you won’t be able to store it in long-term memory.
- Weak immune system: Some studies show that sleep-deprived individuals are more likely to get sick due to their weakened immune systems.
- Paranoia: A lack of sleep is often considered the likely cause of developing paranoia.
How Much Sleep Does a 40-year-old Adult Need ?
National Sleep Foundation recommends that a healthy adult should sleep for about 7-9 hours per night. This, of course, varies depending on the health condition of the individual. For instance, a person suffering from a sleeping disorder may have to follow other guidelines. Similarly, persons with some other medical problems may need to sleep more to rest and recover completely.
Healthy people with ages ranging from 18 years to 64 years fall under the category of those who require 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night. Two types of people form the bulk of this group: young adults and adults. From this, we can extrapolate that 40-year-old adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep.
Older adults require about 7 to 8 hours.
Recommended hours of sleep for other groups of people are:
- 14 to 17 hours for newborns
- 12 to 15 hours for infants
- 11 to 14 hours for toddlers
- 10 to 13 hours for preschoolers
- 9 to 11 hours for school-age children
- 8 to 10 hours for teens
This infographic summarises this data:
From this data, we can see that the required hours for sleep are reduced with age. Why does this happen?
Why Does the Amount of Sleep Decrease With Age?
A neurohormone, Melatonin, is associated with the amount of sleep that decreases with aging. This hormone is released in response to low light levels at dusk. Studies show that adults with sleep disorders have lower amounts of this hormone than healthy people, which may be a cause of their disrupted sleep patterns and the consequential poor quality of sleep.
What can we do to improve our sleep quality?
- Avoid using electronic devices one hour before bedtime. The blue light from mobile screens is linked to suppression of melatonin release in people, thus disrupting their sleep patterns. If you’re a freelancer and work from home, and due to some deadline it’s absolutely necessary to use electronic devices before bed, then it is advised to use blue light filters on the screen.
- Avoid alcohol and caffeine as much as you can. Adults don’t really consider the harmful effects of caffeine when they gulp down that delicious cup of tea or the crucial coffee without which they believe they won’t be able to work, but they’re deteriorating your health quality day by day. If you can’t function without caffeine, it’s advised to monitor your caffeine intake regularly.
- Sticking to a stable schedule helps improve sleep quality. Do not change your schedule even on weekends!
- Meditation helps you be mindful of your surroundings, soothing your mind which remains preoccupied with work all day. Practice meditation or yoga before sleeping and after waking up to achieve optimum sleep quality.
- Reading before bed helps you fall asleep quickly added with the bonus of enabling you to learn something new every day.
And that’s it! Thanks for reading.
Share your sleep schedule in the comments below and let us know if you need more information on this topic!
Here you go for Benefits and risks of exercise and youth.