What Getting Enough Sleep Does for Your Body

May 16, 2019

Sleep plays a vital role in your physical health. And getting enough sleep each night protects your body from both mental and physical health problems. We all know what it feels like to wake up energized after getting a full night of rest and equally understand what it feels like to function on a mere few hours of sleep. The way you feel while you’re awake is largely dependent upon what happens while you’re asleep.

During sleep, your body is working to support healthy brain function and maintain your physical health. For those who exercise regularly and put strain on their muscles, sleep helps support muscle recovery. While you may “feel fine” functioning on little sleep, that doesn’t mean your body does. Kids and teens on average need about 9.5 hours of sleep per night, while most adults need 7-9 hours of sleep a night. Many people think they will be able to catch up on sleep during the weekend, but if your sleep deficit is too high, this method will be ineffective. Without adequate sleep, you might feel sluggish, feel incapable of performing daily activities, and you may suffer from body aches and pains.

Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep accounts for 20-25% of total sleep time. REM sleep provides energy to your brain and restores the mind for waking hours. Non-REM sleep makes up 40% of total sleep time each night. This phase of the sleep cycle is essential for muscle recovery and repair. Your body is replenished with increased blood flow, while oxygen and nutrients are delivered to your muscles and tissues for healing and growth.

It’s true that getting enough sleep can help your muscles grow, but without enough sleep, muscle mass can actually decrease. This isn’t great news for those who participate in vigorous physical activity and skimp on a full night of rest. If you participate in physical activity on a daily or weekly basis, it’s important to prioritize your sleep schedule and set your body up well for a long life of being healthy and feeling well-rested.

If you’re experiencing lingering muscle pain, it may be due to a lack of sleep. Talk to a physician about your pain and schedule an appointment at Campbell Clinic today.


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