Are 6 Hours of Sleep Enough?
Whether you’re a student trying to make it by on coffee alone or an average adult with a busy schedule, you are probably among the vast majority of Americans that don’t get enough sleep—about one-third of adults and two-thirds of high school students to be exact . It’s a common phenomenon—our society is so big on “getting it done” that we often forget to look after ourselves at the end of the day.
There’s a lot more to getting a good night’s rest than you think. Sleep is one of the most important bodily processes. Without it, your body wouldn’t function.
But, just how much sleep is enough sleep? Let’s find out.
Why Is Sleep So Important?
Eating healthy, getting daily exercise, and prioritizing your mental health are all things that are on the same par as getting adequate sleep. Sleep is essential for your health. It’s the foundation. It’s more than just a time for you to get some much-needed beauty rest.
Sleep regulates emotional response, it rebuilds muscles, removes toxins in the brain, keeps your memories intact, and maintains your inner biological clock, among other things [1,2].
What Happens When You Don’t Get Enough Sleep?
If you are suffering from a lack of sleep, you are increasing the likelihood of so many more issues than just feeling a little woozy every morning [1,2]:
- Your immunity is impaired, and it’s easier for you to get sick.
- The health of your heart suffers, increasing the chances of developing heart disease down the line.
- Your cognitive processes are impaired. You end up with “brain fog,” and normal brain functions like memory, decision-making, reasoning, reaction time, and problem-solving are affected.
- Your sex drive decreases, including overall mood and vigor.
- The possibility of weight gain and the risk of obesity is increased.
- You’re at a higher risk of developing diabetes.
- You’re at a higher risk of developing cancer.
- You are more likely to develop fine lines, wrinkles, uneven skin color, and looseness of the skin over time.
- Your metabolic functions are hindered.
- You’re at an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
- You are less creative during the day because your ability to think and focus is impaired.
- You are more susceptible to being less productive during the work day.
- You are more likely to experience negative mood swings frequently.
How Much Sleep Do I Need?
So, we know that sleep is vital to our health. But, what’s the answer to the question “Are 6 hours of sleep enough?”
Let’s take a look at some of the facts.
According to recent research, individuals who only got about 5 hours of sleep per night for 4 nights in a row had a mental “brain fog” the equivalent of someone with a blood alcohol content of 0.06 . In another study, researchers found that you are three times more likely to get in a car accident if you get 6 or fewer hours of sleep each night .
The facts are clear—6 hours just won’t cut it. You could be putting yourself, and others, at risk if you are getting 6 or fewer hours of sleep each night.
The minimum is at least 7 to 8 hours per night, however, the amount of sleep you need each night is primarily determined by age and other unique factors like genetics. Here are the official recommendations from the CDC :
- Older adults (65+): 7–8 hours
- Adults (18–64 years): 7–9 hours
- Teenagers (14–17 years): 8–10 hours
- School children (6–13 years): 9–11 hours
- Preschoolers (3–5 years): 10–13 hours (including naps)
- Toddlers (1–2 years): 11–14 hours (including naps)
- Infants (4–12 months): 12–15 hours (including naps)
- Newborns (0–3 months): 14–17 hours
How Do I Get Better Sleep?
If you’re looking for tips and tricks to falling asleep, check out our guide that gives you 8 quick tips to fall asleep fast. In the meantime, here are a few basics to help you get started and set up your bedroom for quality sleep [5,6]:
- Try a relaxing pre-bedtime routine that will calm your nervous system, like reading a book, taking a bath, or meditating through breathing exercises or calming yoga.
- Make your bedroom a calm oasis with the tried and true Cosy Lavender Linen Spray, which is inspired by aromatherapy and formulated without aerosols, dyes, propellants, and synthetic fragrances.
- The Luxury Weighted Blanket is the perfect companion for your new wind-down routine. Deep-touch pressure stimulation technology created by thousands of tiny glass beads, evenly distributed throughout the fabric, has been scientifically proven to reduce feelings of anxiety and depression while promoting tranquility.
- Switch your old sheets for Bamboo Viscose sheets. Bamboo viscose carries thermal-regulating properties that balance your body’s temperature, keeping you cool and comfortable all night long for a deeper rest.
- Don’t use any form of technology for at least 30 minutes before bed. Turn it off! Blue light affects both your quality and quantity of sleep.
- Be comfortable when you hit the hay. A great place to start is your pajamas. Our Bamboo Viscose Loungewear is just the thing. Like our luxury bedding, this loungewear set is made with the highest-quality bamboo viscose blend for a breathable, moisture-wicked, and cooling night’s rest.
What are some things that help you fall asleep each night? Let us know in the comments below. The Cosy community would love to hear from you!
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- Jones, T. (2017, May 28). Find out how many hours of sleep you need to feel your best. Healthline. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/how-much-sleep-you-need#TOC_TITLE_HDR_3
- Marcin, A. (2019, May 12). 10 things that happen to your body when you don't get enough sleep. Healthline. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/healthy-sleep/what-happens-to-your-body-when-you-lose-sleep#appearance
- Barnes, C. M., & Drake, C. L. (2015). Prioritizing Sleep Health: Public Health Policy Recommendations. Perspectives on psychological science: a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, 10(6), 733–737. https://doi.org/10.1177/1745691615598509
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2017, March 2). CDC - how much sleep do I need? - sleep and sleep disorders. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/sleep/about_sleep/how_much_sleep.html
- Ari Shechter, Elijah Wookhyun Kim, Marie-Pierre St-Onge, Andrew J. Westwood, Blocking nocturnal blue light for insomnia: A randomized controlled trial, Journal of Psychiatric Research, Volume 96, 2018, Pages 196-202, ISSN 0022-3956, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpsychires.2017.10.015.
- The best temperature for sleep: Advice & tips. Sleep Foundation. (2022, September 29). Retrieved from https://www.sleepfoundation.org/bedroom-environment/best-temperature-for-sleep#:~:text=The%20best%20bedroom%20temperature%20for,for%20the%20most%20comfortable%20sleep