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Are you oversleeping?

Posted on April 23 2022

You could be struggling with one of these conditions...

Sleep is the best remedy for several health issues and has excellent health benefits! However, overdoing it brings health risks. Similarly, very little sleeping also contributes to numerous health risks. 

Proper sleep not only refreshes you but also improves learning, helps the heart, repairs blood vessels faster, and further improves the immune system.  

A study by the Sleep Foundation stated that seven to eight hours of sleep each night is sufficient for most people.

Sometimes, occasionally you may even need more sleep than usual. Such may happen if you have had an extraordinarily hectic or vigorous activity or travel. And that extra quantity of sleep may not hurt you. Yet, if consistently sleeping longer still leaves you tired or dozing during the day, it may be a sign of a health issue. 

What is oversleeping?

Oversleeping or long sleeping is defined as sleeping more than nine hours in 24 hours. It is to be known that if you are oversleeping and experiencing excessive sleepiness during the day, it can be called Hypersomnia.

Mostly, it can also be because of other medical conditions. 

Certain health conditions that can cause oversleeping:

Medical conditions such as fibromyalgia and low thyroid function:

Fibromyalgia is a condition in which a person has long-term pain spread throughout the body. This pain is often linked to tiredness, sleep problems, and difficulty concentrating, including brain fog, headaches, depression, and anxiety.

Low thyroid function is also associated with a sluggish metabolism and tiredness even after a full night’s worth of sleep. It is best to get your thyroid level’s checked if necessary. Read this for more:

Viral illnesses, Mononucleosis:

Our body is receptive when a foreign object enters our body, such as viral infections. It further activates the immune system and attacks foreign objects naturally. It may make an individual weak and sleepy, leading to oversleeping.

However, one must consult a medical expert if such symptoms remain for more than the average period.

Narcolepsy and other sleep disorders:

Most sleep disorders result from autoimmune reactions. The autoimmune reaction occurs when the body's immune system mistakenly attacks the healthy body tissue. It is best to visit a doctor as it may also lead to severe health conditions.

Idiopathic Hypersomnia:

In this sleep disorder, health care professionals can't identify the cause for oversleeping. This sleep disorder is characterised by difficulty walking, excessive sleepiness and the inability to feel rested after sleeping at night or napping during the day. With this disorder, one can tend to sleep as much as 14 to 18 hours.

Other health conditions include

  • Obesity, which primarily causes obstructive sleep apnea

  • Cardiovascular Disease 

  • Diabetes

  • Depression and anxiety

Impact of oversleeping.

During the weekend, you must have stayed in bed sleeping more extended hours than usual, right?

But it must have been peculiar after you are awake. Instead of feeling refreshed, you must have often felt exhausted, headache and remained lazy throughout the day. But this is just a short term side effect of oversleeping. And following such a routine of oversleeping may significantly impact the overall health and negatively affect just as lack of sleep does. 

Researchers have suggested that oversleeping may cause the following health issues: 

  • Worsens inflammation in the body

  • Decreases the immune function 

May even lead to chronic diseases: 

Both short and long term sleep durations are associated with multiple numbers of health concerns and chronic diseases. These include: 

  • Obesity

  • Frequent mental distress

  • Coronary heart disease

  • Diabetes

  • Stroke

Tips to avoid oversleeping

If you are concerned about oversleeping, it is best to check up and consult a doctor. Doctors and specialists can use this information to help you identify the cause of oversleeping and suggest a treatment plan. Sometimes it even detects underlying disease at an early stage and enables treatment at the earliest. 

Regardless of the cause, you can implement healthy sleep tips to improve the sleep cycle or habits:

  • Setting up a Regular Sleep Schedule: Make sure to go to bed and wake up simultaneously every day. It enables you to avoid sleep loss and sleep disorders, further contributing to a healthy lifestyle. 

  • Create a bedtime routine: A routine helps you attain the required task systematically without stressing out, causing mental distress. It will help you relax and prepare for sleep easily.

  • Consider the Sleep Environment: Our brain is the most sensitive yet potent tool, and mastering this tool for our best requires a lot of effort. A healthy and peaceful environment contributes to this cause, which will help one be mindful, at peace, and not cause unnecessary distress to our mental health. Therefore, one should maintain their bedroom at a cool temperature, free from excess light and noise. Creating such an environment enables one to get quality and peaceful sleep.

  • Physical activity: Physical activity triggers your sleep hormone and helps repair the bodies natural circadian cycle. Besides this, it also contributes to cardiovascular and immune health.

  • Cutting off the short naps or naps early: If one has a sleep cycle issue, it is best to avoid short naps.

We are so occupied with health concerns that we often ignore to find out the root cause. However, finding the root cause may also contribute to easing the diseases and further contribute to the prevention of sleep disorders.

Trust this helps,

Roshni Sanghvi.

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