Sleep is crucial for your overall health and well-being. There are generally considered to be four sleep stages—awake, light, deep and REM sleep. Deep sleep is the key repair and restorative stage of sleep, and it’s necessary to feel your best each day.
Learn what deep sleep is and how to improve it for overall well-being.
Deep Sleep Explained
Deep sleep occurs during the third stage of the sleep cycle, according to Healthline. During deep sleep, electrical activity in the brain appears as delta waves, which can be classified as long, slow waves. Deep sleep typically occurs within an hour of falling asleep and occurs in shorter periods as the night progresses.
Deep sleep is categorized in the body by slow breathing and heart rate function, as well as relaxed muscles. It can be challenging to be woken up during this stage of sleep, and when woken, it’s typical to feel groggy for an hour or so after.
The Importance of Deep Sleep
Deep sleep has a significant impact on overall health and well-being. According to WebMD, this is due to your body releasing a growth hormone to build and repair muscles, bones and tissues and help the immune system function. Deep sleep also aids cognitive function and memory and impacts language learning, motor skills and brain development.
A lack of deep sleep may cause issues with learning or remembering information. You are also more prone to getting sick due to weakened immune system function. Some signs you may not be getting enough deep sleep may include:
- Feeling unrefreshed and drowsy
- Experiencing reduced alertness and attention
- Having trouble learning and forming new memories
- Craving high-calorie food
Improving Deep Sleep
Finding ways to improve your sleeping patterns is a good place to start if you believe you’re not getting enough deep sleep each night. Try some of these tips for achieving deep sleep:
- Establish a regular sleep schedule.
- Reduce caffeine intake in the afternoon and evening.
- Exercise regularly.
- Ensure your sleep environment is quiet, dark and cool.
- Create a bedtime routine that relaxes you and prepares you for sleep.
- Take a warm bath to help induce deep sleep before bed.
- Listen to binaural beats that can help induce delta waves for deep sleep.
Improving deep sleep patterns takes time and practice. If you’re struggling with your sleep, it could be beneficial to seek medical guidance from your physician.
Knowing what deep sleep is, its importance for your overall health and how to improve your sleeping habits can positively impact your health.
For more information on improving your sleep or general sleeping patterns, seek professional guidance.