Sleeping enough is important for health, but sleeping too much has been connected to a slew of medical issues, including diabetes, heart disease, and an increased chance of mortality.
How much sleep is too much sleep?
The quantity of sleep you need fluctuates greatly throughout your life. It is determined by your age and degree of exercise, as well as your overall health and lifestyle. For example, you may have a stronger need for sleep during times of stress or sickness. Although the requirement for sleep changes with time and from person to person, doctors suggest seven to nine hours of sleep every night for a typical adult.
Why do some people oversleep?
Oversleeping may be caused by a sleep problem such as hypersomnia (excessive sleepiness), restless leg syndrome (neurological movement disorder), or obstructive sleep apnea, a disease in which patients stop breathing while sleeping.
Excessive sleep may also be caused by medicine or alcohol usage. Certain medical disorders, such as depression, may also lead individuals to oversleep.
However, sometimes some people just happen to sleep a lot without any medical issues.
Consequences of Excessive Sleeping
If you sleep too much, you are more likely to develop the following medical conditions:
- Diabetes: According to research, sleeping too much or too little each night increases the risk of developing diabetes.
- Obesity: Sleeping too little or too much might lead you to gain weight. According to a recent research, people who sleep nine or 10 hours each night are 21% more likely to become fat than those who sleep seven to eight hours. This association was evident even when food consumption and activity were taken into consideration.
- Headaches: Some individuals who are prone to headaches may get more headaches if they sleep longer than usual, such as during the weekend or on a vacation. This is due to the impact of too much sleep on specific neurotransmitters in the brain, particularly serotonin, according to researchers.
- Depression: While sleeplessness is more usually connected with depression, it may also occur in those who sleep excessively. Around 15% of people suffering from depression sleep excessively. This, in turn, may exacerbate their depression since regular sleep patterns are essential for the healing process.
- Heart disease: According to a study of 72,000 women, the women who slept nine to eleven hours a night were 38% more likely to develop coronary heart disease than those who slept eight hours at most. Researchers have yet to discover the cause of the association between excessive sleep and heart disease.
- Death: According to studies, those who sleep nine hours or more per night have a much greater death risk than those who sleep seven to eight hours per night. The exact cause of this association is unclear, however researchers did discover that depression and poor socioeconomic position are also linked to sleeping longer. These variables, they believe, may be associated to the increased death rate.
Mandell is currently working towards a medical degree from the University of Central Florida. His main passions include kayaking, playing soccer and tasting good food. He covers mostly science, health and environmental stories for the Scientific Origin.