We all know that proper sleep is Very Important. Sleep deprivation can cause a number of issues, from cognitive impairment to depression to fine lines and wrinkles. But oversleeping can be just as harmful.
According to an American study of 9,000 participants, people who sleep over nine hours per night have a 50 percent greater diabetes risk than those who sleep only seven hours per night. Other side effects of oversleeping, such as obesity, heart disease, and even early mortality, have also been documented.
Grogginess & Exhaustion
Ever notice that oversleeping leaves you feeling sort of hungover and more tired than usual? This is because sleeping in messes with your body’s clock, making you feel jet-lagged and confused.
Aches & Pains
I know that if I oversleep, my head will feel like I’m wearing a very tight hat the entire day. Because of the effect oversleeping has on serotonin in the brain, headaches are a common side effect. Back pain can also be a factor, due to inactivity, with chronic lower back pain being a concern.
Mental Health Concerns
Although depression commonly goes hand-in-hand with lack of sleep, it is also a concern for those who oversleep. Not only that, but a cycle is created when depression is aggravated and the need for sleep becomes greater, making the depression worse. Anxiety is also a risk factor with oversleeping, as are memory problems and general malaise.
Breaking The Cycle
Adopting a healthy sleeping routine is one of the best gifts you can give yourself. Try to be in bed at a reasonable hour--and don’t hit that snooze button in the morning.
While it is tempting to "catch up on sleep" over the weekend or to see sleep in as a luxury or reward, that perception shouldn’t rule your sleep schedule. Shoot for seven to eight hours of sleep each night; sleeping more than this won't make you feel better or less exhausted (trust me, I've tried it).
If you find that seven to eight hours of sleep per night just isn’t cutting it, try to identify the cause of your oversleeping and talk to your doctor about it. Sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, could be to blame. Medication and alcohol or mental health issues like depression, lack of motivation, and anxiety can also accompany an increased need for sleep.
- How many hours of sleep do you get per night?
- Do you reward yourself with sleep?
- How many times do you hit the snooze button before you get out of bed?