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How Many Hours Sleep Do You Need Per Night?

Sleep plays an important part in your health, helping to regulate your metabolism, promote healthy brain function and support your mental wellbeing.

The amount of sleep you need varies depending on age with individuals requiring less sleep as they grow older. The Mayo Clinic website recommends the following number of hours for each age category:

Age

Recommended Hours of Sleep

Newborns

14 - 17 hours per day.

12 Months

10 hours at night, plus 4 hours of naps.

2 Years

11 - 12 hours at night, plus 1-2 hours of naps.

3 - 5 Years

10 - 13 hours per day.

6 – 13 Years

9 – 11 hours per day.

14 – 17 Years

8 – 10 hours per day.

Adults

7 – 9 hours.

 

The figures above are recommended for the average person in all of these age categories, and can vary depending on certain circumstances such as pregnancy, ageing or sleep deprivation from a previous night.

How Much Sleep Are People Getting?

Whilst the recommended sleep for adults is around 7 to 9 hours a day, the global average for sleep is now much closer to 6 hours. With 51% of adults not getting enough sleep, it is vital to promote the importance of getting a good night’s rest and how to achieve this.

According to The Independent, people in the UK were getting an average between 5.78 and 6.83 hours of sleep at night, meaning many Brits could be missing out on the recommended amount of sleep by over 100 minutes. 

Another study indicated that the global average for sleep (for those who are over 25) was 6.9 hours, suggesting that the UK also gets less sleep than the worldwide average.

However, the UK is not the only country getting less sleep than the rest of the world, Japan being notorious for its lack of sleeping hours. One study reported that adults living in Japan got an average of 6.3/6.4 hours of sleep at night.

At the other end of the scale, the same report claimed that those in Finland get the most amount of sleep, with women sleeping for an average of 7.45 hours (drawing with those in Belgium) and men 7.24.

 

Ways to Promote Sleep

There are various different ways to promote sleep (link to other article), improving both the quality and quantity you get. Some great ways that can help to promote sleep include the following:

 

  • Sticking to a bedtime schedule – sticking to a certain bedtime (even on the weekends) can help you to regulate your body clock, fall asleep quicker and stay asleep throughout the night. A healthy time to go to sleep for adults would be between 10pm to 11pm.

 

  • Exercise regularly – exercise has been well known to help promote sleep, some studies showing that is helps reduce the length of time it takes to fall asleep and increases the length of time that is actually spent sleeping.

 

  • Avoid blue light a few hours before bed – exposure to light can help make us feel more awake, with certain types alerting the brain and making us think that it is daytime. Blue light has been shown to be the worst for this, and is emitted by smartphones, laptops and other devices. It can therefore help to reduce exposure to blue light a couple of hours before bed, helping to prevent alertness in the brain and further promote sleepiness.

 

  • Optimise your sleeping environment (bedroom) – the environment you sleep in can have a considerable impact on both the amount of sleep you get and the quality of this sleep. Ensuring your bedroom is as free from any noise and light as possible can help to reduce disturbances and promote sleep. It might be worth investing in some ear plugs or eye mask to help with this.

 

Weighted blankets can be used to apply pressure to the body, enabling our brains to better understand the body’s position in a certain space. By providing the brain with this information, it can help us to become less stressed and restless.

Studies have recently shown the benefits of weighted blanket with one reporting that 63% of participants found it made them feel less anxious and stressed. 33% of the participants in the same study also reported a reduced overactivity of the nervous system.

Studies have also claimed that weighted blankets have helped to promote sleeping patterns and increase sleep overall, with many people using them to get to deep REM faster.

At Calming Blankets we offer a range of different weighted blankets, varying in size, weight and style. Our blankets also use inner ties to ensure even weight distribution. Visit here too see our full range of calming products.

 

Sources

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-sleep-cancer-wellness-heart-disease-chronic-disease-a9136006.html

https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/sleep/art-20048379