Can You Sleep too Much: Oversleeping is just as harmful as not enough sleep
Oversleeping – getting too much sleep – can have serious impacts on your health.
Sleeping in occasionally on Saturday isn’t oversleeping. The average adult should be sleeping about 7 to 9 hours a night, according to the National Sleep Foundation. Experts say sleeping for more than 9 hours each night is a long amount for adults. If you regularly sleep for more than 9 hours each night and don’t feel rested, you may be oversleeping.
Oversleeping, or long sleeping, impacts approximately 2 percent of the population, and often starts in childhood, according to the American Sleep Association. Long sleepers usually have difficulty waking up to alarm clocks and others trying to wake them. Men are typically impacted more than women.
Just like not enough sleep, too much sleep can have negative impacts on your health. Oversleeping has been linked to depression; increased inflammation and pain; and a higher risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. It has the same effect as not enough sleep.
A recent study found that sleeping more than 8 hours may increase your cardiovascular-related death rate. Those who slept less than four hours were at the same risk.
How can you avoid oversleeping? Try to go to sleep the same time every night, and stick to a nighttime routine. Also, avoid caffeine and alcohol close to bedtime. For more tips, read Somnology’s six tips for a better sleep.
If you are worried about oversleeping, start tracking your sleep with the free MobileSleepDoc Pro app and consider purchasing a home sleep monitoring system, such as the Plex® Sleep Scanner. Both the app and the scanner are able to show signs of common sleep disorders to help improve your sleep quality. If the tracking shows you are regularly sleeping more than 9 hours per night, consult your doctor or medical professor on next steps.