There are many benefits to a healthy night of sleep including energy restoration and body repair. Understanding your sleep cycle can help you better grasp what happens during sleep and why it is beneficial. It can also help you understand why waking up during certain stages of sleep is easier versus harder. When you sleep there are 4 stages in one cycle. During the night, you will continue to cycle through the four stages of sleep. But the length of each stage may differ throughout the night. The fourth stage of sleep is known as REM, it is only 10 minutes the first time you cycle through, but as the night continues REM stage lengthens and can last around 60 minutes. A solid night of sleep is important and as you will see your memory and brain processing are polished during REM.
The 4 stages of sleep
Stage 1: The first stage of sleep lasts 5-10 minutes. This stage of sleep is easy to wake from. If you are awoken during this first stage, you may not have even felt that you were sleeping.
Stage 2: The second stage of sleep lasts around 20 minutes. Stage 2 is where 50% of your sleep is spent. Your breathing becomes more regulated. Scheduling a power nap to last the first 2 stages of sleep is a perfect way to restore yourself. As the last 2 stages are much deeper sleep and harder to wake from.
Stage 3: The third stage of sleep is known as delta sleep. During this stage of sleep, your muscles are more relaxed and your body temperature starts to drop. This is a deep level of sleep.
Stage 4: REM sleep is the fourth stage. Rapid Eye Movement (REM) is the stage of sleep where you dream. You spend about 20% of your night’s sleep in this cycle. Even though this stage is only 20% of your sleep cycle, it is very important as your brain works on memory processing. The brain is very active while the muscles are very relaxed during REM sleep.Tags: health, sleep