Is Sleeping Too Much Bad for You?

Any Internet search will land you plenty of articles and scientific journals about the necessities and benefits of a good night’s sleep. It’s universally understood that a full night of rest can be one of the best solutions for a multitude of problems, including fatigue, weakness, frustration, illness, stress, and even depression. When our bodies are sleep deprived, we become susceptible to illness and an overall decrease in our quality of life. Conversely, is sleeping too much bad for you?

If you have any questions about adjusting your sleep schedule, get in touch with your top sleep doctor in NYC, Dr. Shukla today.

Oversleeping, Defined

Everybody sleeps differently. For some people, 7 hours gives them a full night of rest. Others need 8 – 10 hours to feel that same amount of rest. So how can we define oversleeping in a way that can be universally applied to everyone?

The National Sleep Foundation defines the normal healthy amount of sleep for adults to be between 7 and 9 hours. Anything more than that is defined as oversleeping. And while everyone feels rested on different amounts of sleep, it’s worth asking, “Is sleeping too much bad for you?”. The amount of sleep you’re getting often directly correlates to your brain health.

The Health Impact of Oversleeping

It’s true that some people just sleep longer than others. In fact, the American Sleep Association states that about 2% of the human population are naturally long sleepers. But in most cases, sleeping between 10 – 12 hours on a consistent basis is a red flag that there might be some other health issues at play.

Chronic oversleepers who aren’t well-rested are at risk for the following illnesses and conditions:

Impaired Brain Functions

Your cognition can suffer a decrease in functionality as time goes on. You may not be able to interpret your surroundings or make sound decisions without your cognition being at full capacity.

You may also be at risk for degenerative diseases like dementia or Alzheimer’s. This is true for both undersleeping and oversleeping, as your brain is being starved for the energy it needs.

Decreased Mental Health

There is a direct link between sleep problems and depression. The U.S. National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health conducted a study that surveyed people who oversleep and noted that they have much more consistent symptoms of anxiety and depression when compared with regular sleepers.

Inflammation Problems

Oversleeping can actually make your body more prone to chronic inflammation. This becomes evident in conditions such as heart disease and obesity. Many studies have shown an increase in C-reactive protein levels in those who sleep too long. C-reactive proteins, also known as CRPs, are the proteins that create inflammation in the body.

More Intolerance

Studies have also linked oversleeping to glucose intolerance, which can also lead to type 2 diabetes. Pain levels also increase, meaning that your body will start to feel worse as time goes on. Back pain can come from sleeping too much, especially if you’re on an old or uncomfortable mattress. You may start to develop headaches, fevers, and even fertility loss.

Is Sleeping too Much Bad for You? Maybe.

Numerous studies have concluded that too much sleep can lead to drastic effects and diseases which may affect your mortality rate. Your body and brain can degenerate in many ways that lead to a decreased quality of life.

It’s important to speak with a sleep doctor as soon as possible if you struggle with too much or too little sleep. We can help you find a healthy balance of sleep, using the right methods to make you feel rested and refreshed every day. Our Sleep Center is fully equipped to find a customized solution for you.

To learn more about our sleep specialties and services, please get in touch online, or give us a call at (212) 661-7077.

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