Hazards of oversleeping


Sleep is vital for good health as the body repairs and restores itself during sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation in the US, seven to nine hours of sleep is normal and healthy for adults between 18 and 64 years of age.

While the health problems associated with too little sleep are well-known, the dangers of oversleeping are not so commonly spoken about. The most common reason for an increased sleep need is not getting enough sleep the night before, or cumulatively during the week. Other causes are sleep disorders like sleep apnea and daytime sleepiness. Oversleeping is linked to the following health problems:

Obesity: According to a Canadian study, people sleeping over nine hours were 21% more likely than normal sleepers to become obese.

Diabetes: A Quebec study conducted in 2013 clearly showed that a person who sleeps for more than eight hours a day is more at risk from type 2 diabetes and reduced glucose tolerance.

Heart disease and stroke: Researchers have found that people sleeping more than eight hours per night were twice as likely to have angina or chest pain caused by reduced blood flow to the heart. They had a 50% higher risk of stroke as well.

Infertility: A 2013 Korean study found that women who got pregnant after IVF treatment slept 7-8 hours a night. It also suggested that sleep can affect menstrual cycles and hormone secretion.

Depression: Oversleeping is a symptom of depression. While people with depression tend to suffer from insomnia, an estimated 15% of depression patients tend to oversleep.

Cognitive impairment: Studies have found memory impairment and decreased cognitive function with longer sleep hours. Oversleeping has also been linked to Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Pain: Rest and sleep are associated with healing. You would think they would reduce pain. However, oversleeping can aggravate back and shoulder pain and cause headaches.

Inflammation: Inflammation in the body has been linked to diabetes, heart disease and Alzheimer’s among other health issues. It is measured by levels of C-reactive proteins (CRP). Elevated levels of CRP have been linked to sleeping too long.

Moderation is the key when it comes to sleep. Regularly sleeping more than nine hours is linked with lower mental and physical health. So, avoid oversleeping. Use your alarm to wake up at a fixed time everyday and stay healthy.

Sources: www.lybrate.com, www.huffingtonpost.com, www.webmd.com


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