How to Sleep Better: 20 Science-Backed Tips for The Best Sleep of Your Life (Part 4)

January 17, 2022

How to Sleep Better: 20 Science-Backed Tips for The Best Sleep of Your Life (Part 4)

  • 18. Repay Sleep Debt
Sleep debt is the collective effect of sleep loss when you don’t sleep enough. If you sleep less than 8 hours regularly, this debt continues to pile up and you start to experience a decline in your physical and mental performance. The only way to repay sleep debt is with more sleep.

A study that followed the sleeping patterns of participants for 13 years found catching up on sleep and effectively repaying sleep debt reduced risk of early death. Another study concluded that it takes four days to make up just one hour of lost sleep.

Sleep debt can be hard to avoid, but sticking with a consistent sleep schedule will help avoid sleep debt from piling up.

  • 19. Learn About The Sleep Cycle
Sleep is a cyclic process with four phases. One sleep-wake cycle takes 90 to 120 minutes to complete, and an average person undergoes 4 or 5 cycles per night. Learning about the sleep cycle and what our bodies go through when we sleep provides a foundation for understanding how to improve our own sleep.

Each of these stages plays a different role in our rest and recovery. You’ve probably heard about REM sleep and deep sleep. There is much more to the sleep cycle than just the terms we’ve heard before.

This information is especially important if you use a sleep tracker. While sleep trackers are not 100% accurate, knowing the basics of the sleep cycle can give you an insight into the amount of time you spend in each stage of sleep.

  • 20. Find Your Sleep Chronotype
Similar to a personality test, finding your sleep chronotype can help you better understand your own sleep habits. Los Angeles based sleep doctor and the author of The Power of When, Michael Breus, identifies four different chronotypes based on when you sleep, wake up, and when you are the most productive.

If you’re still tired after a full night’s sleep, it’s a sign that your bedtime routine isn’t in sync with your chronotype. As a result, if you want to unlock your true potential and avoid sluggishness during the day, you must adjust your sleep schedule.

Despite all the research, surveys, and experiments, we are still far from decoding the exact science behind sleep. One thing is certain: it’s not about the amount of hours you sleep, but rather about the quality of your sleep.

The tips outlined above are proven ways to help you sleep. If your goal is to optimal sleep, improve your health, and productivity, continued sleep deprivation puts your body under a great deal of stress, and weekend recovery sleep isn’t enough to make up for it. If you want to sleep better and be more productive, pay more attention to your sleep on a daily basis.

If you’re looking for even more sleep tips, visit our blog!