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Catching Up on Sleep During The Weekend

By Randi Morse

Having two teenagers living in my home reminds me of how much sleep I used to get when I was a teenager. I remember days when I wouldn't wake up until well into the afternoon hours, just as my children tend to do now. My mother, of course, was extremely upset about my late rising, but I remember feeling like I needed all of that sleep just to feel normal. And, that was true, studies have shown that teens do need more sleep than adults. But thinking back to that time reminds me of how cranky my mother would get, and as a mother of teenagers myself now, I completely understand why she was angry: she was jealous. 

Not Enough Sleep

The sad truth is the majority of adults simply don't get enough sleep. Most sleep experts say that adults should get at least eight hours of sleep per night. On average, adults are lucky to get six hours of sleep a night. This is not enough sleep to allow our brain to go into deep sleep. This deep sleep, also known as REM sleep, is the time during which your brain takes all of the information you have learned during the day and stores it safely into your memory. When we don't get enough sleep, our brains are not able to catalog all of those memories, which can make it difficult to create more memories and which also makes us feel exhausted during the day.

Weekend Catch-Up

One thing many adults do is try to catch up on sleep during the weekend. Sleeping in on a Sunday morning sounds fantastic, doesn't it? Unfortunately, sleeping extra hours during the weekend doesn't help your body catch up with your lack of sleep. Even if you try to make up for your lack of sleep on the weekend, you will still find that sleep deprivation affects you during the work week. You will still be more at risk for diseases like hypertension, heart disease, and diabetes, and you may even find that it's easier to gain weight.

Weekday Sleep

It's important to figure out how to create a solid sleep schedule that works with your lifestyle. This may even mean learning to take naps during the day. Some companies have even invested in nap pods, which allow their employees to get a little sleep while they're on their lunch break. Figure out a sleep schedule that would allow you to get as close to eight hours of sleep a night as possible, your body will definitely thank you for it. 

To learn more about your health, wellness and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Port Orange, Fla.

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