Can you sleep too much?
We’re all well aware of how important it is to get a good night’s sleep, but do we always get the right amount?
If we are being totally honest, most of us would probably admit to not having a set routine when it comes to sleep – fluctuating each night between what is perhaps considered too little or even too much, but this can be disastrous for our sleep pattern as a whole.
It can be a struggle to get back on track, but in order to put your mind at ease, Silentnight’s resident sleep expert, Dr Nerina Ramlakhan, has answered some of the most frequently asked questions about sleep patterns.
Is getting too much sleep bad for your health?
Dr Nerina said: “Oversleeping, or hypersomnia, is often associated with poor lifestyle habits. Those who oversleep are less likely to exercise regularly and eat healthily which can predispose them to obesity, diabetes, and heart problems.
“Since working in psychiatry, I’ve noticed that oversleeping can also be linked to low motivation and drive, and even depression.”
Does sleeping more cause health problems, or are existing health problems causing people to sleep for longer?
“It’s a combination of both. Mental health problems can certainly cause oversleeping, as when we lack purpose and motivation in life, it can be harder to get out of bed – it’s important to have a reason to get out of bed in the morning.”
Is snoozing really that bad for you? Is it worse to sleep for 8 hours and then snooze for 1 hour, or is it worse to sleep through for 9 hours?
“There’s nothing wrong with snoozing from time to time – just as long as it isn’t all the time. If you find that you’re doing it more often than not, this could be an indication that there are some underlying mental or physical health problems.”
Is it OK to just oversleep on weekends, or is this worse?
“If done in moderation, this isn’t too bad. However, bingeing on sleep at the weekend can disrupt your routine, and while you may be able to catch up to some extent, you can’t fully recover.”
You can read Dr Nerina’s further advice on catching up on sleep at weekends here.
How do you get out of the habit of sleeping long hours?
Dr Nerina believes that anybody can break their bad sleeping habits by implementing small, positive changes to our day that will have solid benefits to our sleep and energy levels.
Her five non-negotiables are as follows:
- Don’t commute on an empty stomach
- Drink alkaline water
- Moderate your caffeine intake
- Limit your screen time
- Have at least four early nights a week
Are you trying to get your sleep back under control? Tell us how on our social media pages.