It's a common thing I hear from clients, some of whom tell me they function well on six to seven hours of sleep. The National SLEEP Foundation guidelines advise that healthy adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night. Teenagers should get 8 to 10 hours of sleep per night, school children 9 to 12 hours and preschoolers 10 to 13 hours. If you limit yourself to 4 hours of sleep, you will only have time to go through these stages twice.
If over the course of a year you cut one hour of sleep a day, it is easy to understand why people are fatigued and dependent on their morning espresso. However, even if the quality of sleep is good, sleeping less than the recommended number of hours is detrimental to health and mental performance. Drerup advises that it is a good idea to put away devices such as smartphones and tablets at least an hour before bedtime. The norm in the literature is that healthy sleepers spend more than 90 percent of their time in bed sleeping, so if you are in bed for eight hours, a healthy sleeper might actually sleep only about 7.2 hours.
If you sleep fewer hours, you will need to make up for it with more sleep on subsequent nights. Once you have a nightly goal based on the hours of sleep you need, it's time to start planning how to make it happen. Scientists have found a rare ADRB1 gene mutation in people who are able to feel rested on less than 6.5 hours of sleep per night without any apparent health consequences. If you are a carrier of this gene mutation, you may feel rested even if you consistently sleep fewer hours than recommended.
Many people wonder if it is possible to "hack your sleep to spend fewer hours in bed but still feel rested and productive. Once the unique and additional circumstances that did not exist in the 1950s are taken into account, the old rule of going to bed eight hours before wake-up time needs a rethink. To get a healthy eight hours of sleep, which is the amount many people need, you need to be in bed for 8.5 hours.