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The Science Of Sleep: What Happens When You Go To Sleep?

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Written by   84
3 weeks ago

You have finally reached your bed after a long day of work, but before you go to sleep, do you ever wonder what happens in your body when you close your eyes? Sleep is not just about resting the brain and body.

It's actually an active process that changes how our brains function. Researchers are still learning about the science behind sleep, but there are many findings that give us insight into its importance for physical health and mental well-being. Understanding this information may help with creating healthy habits around sleep hygiene!   However, here is an in-depth look at what happens when you go to sleep. 

The different stages of the sleep cycle

image source: verywellhealth.com

The different stages of the sleep cycle are divided into two different categories, namely Rapid Eye Movement (REM) and Non-Rapid Eye Movement. REM occurs in three periods throughout the night with an average duration of about 100 minutes. Non-Rapid Eye Movement is subdivided into four stages during which there are periods of deep sleep, light sleep, and dreaming.

The first stage of Non-Rapid eye movement is called Stage 1 Sleep; which takes up to ten minutes to reach. Stage 2 Sleep comes after this, followed by Stages 3 and 4, which are known as deep sleep.

The duration in each stage can vary across people but typically lasts for 50 minutes per stage. The amount of time spent in each stage also differs depending on the sleep cycle. Stages 1 to 3 are described as Non-Rapid Eye Movement Stages, while REM Stages in Stage 4 and last for about 20 minutes according to ncbi.nlm.nih.gov.

The Pros and Cons of REM Sleep

image source: Pixaybay.com

REM sleep is a necessary process to maintain the health of our brains and bodies. When we go through REM sleep, not only do we experience vivid dreams, but we also experience changes to memory, mood regulation, and neurogenesis that are linked to the development of new brain cells.

Another perk? REM sleep can help reduce stress hormones as well as aiding in memory consolidation. And because REM stages happen throughout the night, it's important for all stages of Non-Rapid Eye Movement as well as REM sleep to be obtained for adequate rest.

That being said, there are some cons worth considering when it comes to REM sleep. The heightened physical activity during this stage means that it's possible for you to feel sore in your muscles when you wake up even if you didn't move much while sleeping. Though this experience is rare, it can happen to those who are susceptible to REM Behavior Disorder.

Some other possible cons of REM sleep include increased appetite, nightmares, and sleep paralysis which are not pleasant experiences for most people. These occurrences usually stem from an imbalance in the brain's neurotransmitters which regulate REM sleep along with other bodily functions.

How to improve your REM cycle

image source: sleepscore.com

Improving your REM cycle can be as easy as following a few simple habits that have been shown to improve the quality of sleep.

  1. One big thing that you should do is try going to bed early.

  2. Another helpful habit is to avoiding caffeine after 2pm, as it has been shown to interfere with REM sleep.

  3. Lastly, exercise has been proven to stimulate quality REM sleep, so try to fit in twenty minutes or so each day!

How to make it easier to fall asleep

image source: Pixabay.com

One way to make it easier to fall asleep is to avoid looking at your phone, tablet, or TV for a few hours before bed. These screens emit a blue light that throws off your brain's internal clock and makes it harder for you to sleep.

Another helpful tip is to make sure you have a clean room, comfortable bedding, and minimal noise. And of course- try not to take your worries with you!

Wrapping Up

image source: Unslpash.com

Your body needs sleep. Sleeping well has physical and psychological benefits. By understanding how sleep works, you can take control of how long you sleep, which will improve your performance at work, keep you fit and healthy, and help you live a fulfilled life.


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Comments

It's good to read this. I am very unstable when it comes to sleep. The times I sleep the most is 6 hours. 8 I hardly ever see the clock. Most of the time I sleep between 4-6 hours.

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3 weeks ago

Good to see you with knowledgeable stuff here learned alot with this and hope to learn more in future as well keep going.

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3 weeks ago

thanks, i really appreciate this

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3 weeks ago

I have some knowledge about sleeping, but I learned a lot from your article. I recently did a sleep study on myself. I slept with a little device on me attached to my chest, 2 small air pipes to my nose and a little peg on my finger. I am still waiting for my result.

I have had sleep paralysis once and it was the scariest thing I have ever experienced in my life. I was fully awake and I was still able to see a black silhouette next to my bed trying to punch me in my face. I will never forget that.

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3 weeks ago

I'm happy to hear that you liked the article and found it useful.

I have also been there: woke up one morning and couldn't open my mouth 👄 although it lasted a few minutes. The truth is it was terrifying.

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3 weeks ago

It is indeed. It happens because your body is still acting like when you are asleep, but your brain is fully awake.

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3 weeks ago

Yeah that messed up 😃

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3 weeks ago

Sleep is very essential in humans life. But the activities we involve ourselves into always take that precious sleep away such as pressing of phone, watching TV and so on

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3 weeks ago

I have this method in sleeping in which I need to think lots of scenarios in my mind in order to rest it, it's weird right, but suddenly I can feel that my body is relax and light, that's the time that I'll fall on sleep, when it comes to waking up,I can feel sometimes that my eyes hurt or even my muscles, maybe what I read right now is the reason for that.

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3 weeks ago

Oh, this is how it is when sleeping. All I knew was that when I lay down, I didn't realize I was asleep.lol hahaha

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3 weeks ago

hahaha

$ 0.00
3 weeks ago