6 Interesting Facts Moms Should Know About Sleep

Brought you by Vive Health. 
Sleeping is as natural as breathing, especially for babies and
children. They don’t think about it. They just do it; sometimes, it just
happens. For a certain number of people, however, sleep is not like that at
all.
Although scientists are only beginning to understand the purpose
of sleeping, the fact remains that this simple act is essential to maintain
normal body functions.
The reason why people and animals sleep is still not fully understood, but despite this
limitation, the current store of available knowledge regarding sleep has
already presented some fascinating facts:

1. Sleep has four stages


The four sleep stages are divided into two types. They are the
NREM (non-rapid eye movement), which has three stages, and the REM (rapid eye
movement).
  • Stage
    1. The first stage of Non-REM sleep is the period when you transition from
    being fully awake to being in a shallow sleep. It is a fairly light sleep
    where your breathing, eye movements, and heartbeat slow down. Your muscles
    also begin to relax.
  • Stage
    2. During the second non-REM stage of sleep, your breathing and heartbeat
    become even slower, your muscles more relaxed, your eye movements stop,
    and your body temperature drops.
  • Stage
    3. This is the last stage of non-REM sleep where you enter into a deep
    sleep. This is the stage that you need in order to feel energized when you
    wake up.
  • REM
    sleep. This stage is when you experience most of your dreams. You also
    have a temporary muscle paralysis the of arms and legs that prevents you
    from acting out your dreams.

2. A lot of things are going on in your body while you sleep


This is true, especially during REM sleep. Your brain becomes very
active, your breathing and heart rate faster, and your eyes move from side to
side rapidly. Your thalamus (located in the cerebral cortex of your brain)
fills you with sensations when you dream. Growth hormone is also being released
during sleep.

3. Newborn babies spend 18 hours (75% of their day) sleeping


The American Academy of Sleep Medicine gave recommendations on the number of hours of sleep that your child must have
per day. The length varies depending on your child’s age.
  • 4-12
    months old: 12-16 hours
  • 1-2
    years old: 11-14 hours
  • 3-5
    years old: 10-13 hours
  • 6-12
    years old: 9-12 hours
  • 13-18
    years old: 8-10 hours

4. Some people find it hard to stay awake at daytime


People with narcolepsy (a long-term condition affecting the
central nervous system) struggle to keep themselves awake at daytime. They can
fall asleep anytime of the day and suffer from loss of muscle tone, sleep
paralysis (inability to talk or move), and distorted perceptions. Its primary
symptom is excessive daytime drowsiness. Patients with narcolepsy might even do
things without being aware of their actions, which happens when they are
somewhere in between sleep and wakefulness.

5. You dream multiple times every night


Although you might only remember a dream or two when you wake up,
adults usually experience an average of 4-6 dreams every night.

6. Lack of sleep has ill-effects on your body


Sleeping for shorter hours than your body’s needs has
health-related consequences. Aside from being drowsy and having a lower level
of energy and productivity, lack
of sleep

can increase your risk of developing lifestyle diseases such as hypertension,
diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease.
Children who are 3-7 years old and sleep for shorter hours are
more likely to suffer from obesity. This is because lack of sleep can make them
have lesser physical activity during the daytime. Since growth hormone is
naturally being released during sleep, sleep deprivation is also associated
with stunted growth in children.
To counter these negative effects of sleep deprivation, it is
important to ensure that your children (and you) get the adequate amount and quality of
sleep that they need. Here are some tips to accomplish this:
  • Electronic
    media devices must be limited before bedtime and replaced with calming
    bedtime routines.
  • Ensure
    that your children are sleeping comfortably. Make their bedroom as
    relaxing as possible by keeping the room dark (or dim, if your child is
    afraid of the dark, which might keep them awake at night), playing calming
    music, and adding other
    bedroom equipment for comfort and recovery
    .
  • Digital
    media devices have been shown to delay bedtimes and reduce sleep duration
    in children and adolescents. Consider removing gadgets from your child’s
    room to reduce distractions and psychological stimulation. The light from
    these gadgets can disrupt your child’s circadian rhythm (sleep-wake
    cycle).
  • Sleepedia recommends breaking the cycle of the late
    nights and caffeine-fuelled mornings for adults.

Behind a healthy child is a happy mom. Nutrition, education, and
physical activity are not the only things that moms need to monitor. Sleep is
also of vital importance.

Amber Louchart

Amber is the proud Homeschooling mother to four beautiful children, Damian (22), Rosaleigh (8), Carlyn (5), Naomi (2) and a wife to her loving husband, Chancellor. She enjoys reading, crafting, photography & singing, although with four children, a house to clean and two websites, she rarely finds time to engage in her hobbies. She loves being a stay-at-home mom and feels blessed to be able to care for her children full-time and provide them with so many opportunities through Metro Detroit Mommy.

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