How to increase deep sleep time?

With the development of science and technology and the popularization of sleep science, when we talk about sleep, we no longer generally say “sleep well” or “sleep deep”, but use more professional sleep terms and data to measure it.



Usually, we are paying attention to the proportion of deep sleep, light sleep, and REM sleep in the total sleep per night, especially deep sleep. Because deep sleep has a repairing effect on the human body, we will pay more attention to it. Today, we just talk about a few knowledge about deep sleep.


One  There will be deep sleep several times a night


Deep sleep is very important for the bodybuilt because growth hormone is secreted during this period. Growth hormone has a repairing effect on the body. It can keep our bodies healthy and functioning well. In addition, growth hormone is also beneficial to strengthen muscles and bones and relieve pain on recovery, as well as improve immunity.


But for deep sleep, there has always been a misunderstanding that deep sleep occurs before midnight, so it is often said that sleeping before midnight is the most beneficial to the body. This statement is not comprehensive. What is the correct understanding?


Deep sleep mainly occurs in the first half of sleep

Whether you go to bed at 10 o’clock, go to bed at 12 o’clock, or go to bed at 2 o’clock, you will have deep sleep. They mainly occur in the early stages of your sleep all night.

In this sleep stage diagram, the pink part represents deep sleep


A complete sleep cycle is divided into three stages, light sleep, deep sleep, and REM sleep.


Light sleep is divided into N1 and N2 phases, and deep sleep is N3 phase.


After a person enters sleep, a normal sleep cycle is:


wide awake

Light sleep (N1, N2)

Deep sleep (N3)

Light sleep (N1, N2)

REM sleep


Most adults have 4 to 6 such sleep cycles every night, which constitutes a complete night of sleep, but in the later stages of sleep, deep sleep may not occur or the time is shorter.


Unfortunately, with age, growth hormone secretion decreases with the decrease of deep sleep. Insufficient deep sleep often makes people feel very sleepy. Therefore, although many people sleep for enough time, they still feel awake after waking up. Well, I feel sleepy during the day and my mental state is not good. How to have a good sleep?


Studies have shown that appropriate and regular exercise during the day can increase the time of deep sleep; the cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT-I) treatment of insomnia can sustainably improve the quality of sleep by reducing unnecessary bedtime, because even if you sleep longer, Nor can it increase the time of deep sleep. On the contrary, the implementation of sleep restriction makes sleep power sufficient and increases sleep continuity.


In addition, avoid doing things that affect the reduction of deep sleep. For example, drinking alcohol before going to bed can help you fall asleep quickly, but it will reduce the time of deep sleep at night; people with sleep apnea will also reduce the time of deep sleep and should be treated as soon as possible.




Two  Light sleep and REM sleep are equally important


Deep sleep is important! Light sleep and REM sleep are equally important! They all have their own functions and they are indispensable. Deep sleep is not as much as possible. They constitute a complete sleep cycle according to a certain proportion.


Take an adult in his 20s as an example. In his complete sleep cycle, the N1 phase accounts for 2% to 5% of the total sleep time, the N2 phase accounts for 45 to 55% of the total sleep time, and deep sleep accounts for 13 to 23. %, the REM period accounts for 20-25%.


Light sleep is the basis of sleep. It may be between deep sleep, REM sleep, and wakefulness.


In the N1 stage, brain waves begin to slow down, muscle activity also begins to decrease, and the brain goes from being awake to sleep.


These changes will continue to the N2 stage, the unique sleep spindle wave, k-complex wave, and other brain wave patterns in the N2 stage. This stage of sleep accounts for the largest proportion of the entire sleep. After the human sleep enters N2, other sleep stages will Follow along.


When entering deep sleep, slow waves (delta waves) begin to appear, which is a wide wave with high amplitude, so it is also called slow-wave sleep, delta wave sleep, or deep sleep.


REM sleep is in the early 1950s. University of Chicago graduate student Eugene Aseryski and his mentor Nathaniel Klettman jointly discovered that after a child is asleep, the eyeballs will turn quickly in different directions. , They named this stage of sleep REM sleep.


They found that the brain activity during REM sleep is very similar to the brain activity during the waking period. This stage is also a stage of a lot of dreaming, and it is also the basic link of memory processing. The REM sleep disorder can cause other cognitions besides memory difficulties. Difficulties, including lack of concentration, lack of concentration, and underlying mood disorders, but REM sleep disorder is not significantly associated with drowsiness.




Three  Is it reasonable to sleep according to the sleep cycle?


Usually, our sleep is 90 minutes as a cycle, but this is average. What we have to understand is that everyone’s sleep cycle is different. Mine maybe 80 minutes, and yours maybe 100 minutes.


The most important thing about sleep is “sleep regular” and “sleep enough .” As long as you go to bed and get up on time every day and sleep for the length of time you need, it is normal. You don’t have to panic because you didn’t sleep well on a certain day, as long as you don’t get anxious, Sleep will get better and better.



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