Do You Oversleep? Too Much Sleep Can Be Bad for You
You could be getting too much sleep!
Sounds impossible, right? Well, Michael J. Breus, Ph.D., a Diplomate of the American Board of Sleep Medicine who is often known as "The Sleep Doctor," suggests that oversleeping is a problem(1). In fact, it could be as damaging as not sleeping enough.
Side effects from getting too much sleep include:
Yes, the effects of oversleeping are like those of being sleep deprived. In fact, sleeping too much is as damaging as not sleeping enough.
How Many Hours of Sleep Should You Get?
According to research done by The Sleep Doctor (1), genetics, age, and activity level all affect how well you sleep and much sleep you need.
For a general idea, use the following sleeping guide (2):
Once you understand how much sleep your body needs, you can start sleeping the correct amount.
How Much Is Too Much?
If you’re wondering, “How much sleep do I need?”, experts suggest that the amount of sleep you need is based on a variety of factors (1). Since everyone is different, there is not a one-size-fits-all amount of sleep.
The “right amount” of sleep you need relates to your:
If you often sleep longer than your suggested amount, you may be sleeping too much.
Oversleeping: The Essentials
Don’t panic! Chronic oversleeping is not the same as occasionally sleeping in.
If you have a late night, or a long week, and decide to sleep in that doesn’t always mean you are damaging your health. No. Your body is simply catching up on the sleep you lost that week (3).
If you tend to sleep hours longer than your recommended amount, you may be sleeping too much.
Chronic oversleeping can lead to diseases like diabetes or obesity. Similarly, sleeping too much can also be a sign of an underlying mental or physical issue.
What Can You Do?
Sadly, sleeping too much doesn’t make you feel less tired. It actually does the opposite– it makes you feel groggy and fatigued.
Waking up is hard to do, but here are some tips to help you stop oversleeping and start feeling refreshed (4):
Make a sleep schedule (and actually stick to it!)
Follow a bedtime routine and go to bed at the same time every day
Avoid using the snooze function of your alarm clock
Don’t use electronics right before bedtime so you don't delay your bedtime
Bonus: If you drink coffee, set a timer on your automatic coffee maker and wake up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee.
These tips can help you avoid oversleeping. But, if these don’t do the trick, consider talking to a doctor or specialist, because you may be dealing with an underlying issue.
Don’t Ignore the Signs
If you think you’ve been chronically oversleeping, it might be time to face the issue head on! Too much sleep is bad for you. And oversleeping can negatively affect your health.
Sleeping too much, like not sleeping enough, can cause fatigue, grogginess, and lead to disease. And oversleeping can also be a sign of an underlying disease.
If you struggle with oversleeping, remember to try the suggestions above– like creating a sleep schedule– and see if that helps.
Once you address your oversleeping habit, you can start creating a healthier sleep pattern. By sleeping the right amount, your body will feel more refreshed and less fatigued.
Ultimately, you’ll be happier because you’ll be well-rested, more productive at work, and more present in relationships.
(1) Breus, Michael Ph.D. "Yes, You CAN Sleep Too Much—Here’s Why Oversleeping Is A Problem." The Sleep Doctor, 16 Jul. 2018, www.thesleepdoctor.com/2018/07/16/yes-you-can-sleep-too-much-heres-why-oversleeping-is-a-problem/
(2) Kittredge, Clare. “How Much Sleep Do You Really Need Each Night?" Everyday Health, 25 Jan. 2018, www.everydayhealth.com/sleep/101/how-much-sleep-do-you-need.aspx
(3) Kolitz, Daniel. “How Much Sleep Is Too Much Sleep?” Gizmodo, 20 Aug. 2018, www.gizmodo.com/how-much-sleep-is-too-much-sleep-1828458614
(4) "HOW MUCH SLEEP DO WE REALLY NEED?" National Sleep Foundation, www.sleepfoundation.org/how-sleep-works/how-much-sleep-do-we-really-need. Accessed 6 Dec. 2018.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this website or provided through our blog, e-mails, or programs is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment that can be provided by your healthcare professionals.