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You Can’t Get By On Just 5 Hours Sleep, Says New Study

As if busy parents needed another reason to get more shut-eye at night, here’s one. There is a new study that says the less sleep you get at night, the more damage you are doing to your health, both physically and mentally. It’s almost impossible to only get four to five hours of sleep at night and be able to function with all of the day-to-day demands that most adults face.

A team of researchers at the NYU Nagone Health’s School of Medicine published their results in the journal, Sleep Health. They found that there’s a link between good sleep and “waking success.” However, a lot of people believe that they can get by with little to no sleep, and often find themselves debunking many myths from news outlets, friends, or family members. The myth that you can sleep "anywhere at any time" is also false.

According to CNN, senior study investigator Girardin Jean-Louis, a professor in the Department of Population Health said, “If you wanted to have the ability to function at your best during the day, not to be sick, to be mentally strong, to be able to have the lifestyle that you would enjoy, how many hours do you have to sleep? It turns out a lot of people felt less than five hours of sleep a night was just fine. That's the most problematic assumption we found."

woman tired at work
Credit: iStock / fizkes

While a lot of adults believe that they only need about seven to eight hours of sleep per night, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that adults should get about 10 hours of sleep each night instead. World Sleep Day statistics prove that about one-third of Americans sleep fewer than seven hours a night. Sleep deprivation is a significant problem for about 45 percent of the global population.

There are several things that adults can do to help ensure that they get a better night of rest. A quality mattress along with a peaceful bedroom setting can help many people feel a little more rested. Also, many health experts advise that you put away your tablets, electronic devices, or avoid watching television before going to bed.

Instead, read a book, meditate, or take a nice, relaxing bath before bedtime to help you maximize the number of hours you get to sleep before waking up the next morning and doing it all over again.

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