When we sleep, crazy things go on, mostly without our knowledge. I’m not only talking about dreaming. How about sleepwalking? Are you or someone you know a sleepwalker? It is more common than you might think. According to SleepFoundation.org, almost one in three children walk in their sleep. It happens mostly between the ages of 10 and 13 years, but some reports indicate that children as young as 3 years could walk in their sleep.
Interestingly, walking is not all sleepwalkers do. They can get up to all kinds of mischief, like moving furniture, running, getting dressed, and even driving. So clearly, sleepwalking can be dangerous. They usually have their eyes open in a glassy stare, blank facial expressions, and incoherent speech. If they are responsive, it will likely be minimal.
People who walk in their sleep can’t recall it, making it challenging to figure out how often it happens. Also, a sleepwalker who lives alone might not even know they do it.
We sleep our lives away
Most of us know only that sleep is essential and that seven or eight hours of sleep is recommended. Here are some crazy facts about sleep that might make you think about what happens when you sleep.
Humans spend about one-third of their lives sleeping. Those who tend to oversleep one or two hours a day have significantly less time to enjoy life. I read somewhere about the person who holds the record for the longest period of sleep — 11 days, without being in a coma!
How much sleep time do we spend dreaming?
Most of us dream most nights, and those nights that seem dreamless are usually the dreams we can’t recall. Interestingly, when we remember what we dreamed, we will recall only about 50% of the entire dream. You will remember that portion of your dream only for about five minutes after waking up. Then, it might also be gone, so if you want to keep notes of your dreams, you have to be quick about it.
Another crazy fact is that about 11% of people dream in black and white! None of the vibrant colors of real life they might expect.
Sleep affects your weight
If you make sure your room is dark and cool and that your bed and sheets are comfortable, it will promote a good night’s rest. Strangely, insufficient sleep increases your appetite. Therefore, enough good quality sleep could reduce your appetite by as much as 45%, making it easier to maintain a healthy weight.
Overall health benefits
Too little or poor-quality night rest hampers blood circulation and affects one’s mood. Studies have shown that sleeping enough can significantly increase life expectancy. Most importantly, the definition of good quality sleep is the full eight hours, during the same hours each night. Okay, fine, nobody can do that every night, so most nights will be at least somewhat beneficial. However, if you generally find it impossible to fall asleep or stay asleep for eight hours per night, discuss it with your physician. The doctor can help you figure out why and find a solution.