Can you ever catch up on sleep?
November 13, 2017 4:15am CST
I’ve always been one of those unlucky people who needs a decent amount of sleep and since having children I never seem to get it. When Big One was a baby I once worked out that I’d need to sleep 24 hours a day for 4 months to catch up on the amount of sleep I’d missed. I was so desperate I almost thought I’d die of exhaustion. Some days I could barely speak I was so tired, I don’t know how I didn’t crash the car and I’m still amazed I didn’t kill someone. And since then lots of research has come out showing links between insufficient sleep and heart disease, obesity and dementia, among other things, which is worrying. Things are better now, thankfully, but I still find it so easy to miss sleep and so hard to regain any. If I consider 11 pm to 7 am as the standard 8 hours, it’s very easy to work late and find myself going to bed at 1 am, or to wake at 5 or 6 am, or even both, and then I’ve missed out on 3 or 4 hours’ sleep in just one night. To make up for just that one night I’d have to go to bed at 7 pm which is obviously just not possible for anyone living an ordinary family life. Does anyone else have a sensible answer to this? Obviously ‘don’t ever stay up late’ and ‘never accidentally wake up early’ have been considered! All rights reserved. © Text and image copyright Fleur 2017.
13 people like this
• Manchester, England
Everything I've read on the subject suggests that you need to get into a routine which you stick to every night, including weekends. No laptops/phones for a couple of hours before bedtime and get up at the same time everyday even weekends. Needless to say I take absolutely no notice of this whatsoever as I get up at 5:15am every weekday so there's no way that's happening at weekends. I've been no help at all have I??
• United Kingdom
That does seem to be the standard advice but how can anyone do that? It would mean never working late or having any sort of social event that went on past about 10pm (as you have to allow time to go home and get ready for bed afterwards). The getting up at the same time part I find easy because I'm in the habit of waking up at the same time or even before, so I wake up early at weekends too.
• United States
I would make any change needed to sleep before walking around like that. I slept a lot when my daughter slept.. I learned that from my Dr. Now tht my friend is new to being a mom she sleeps when her 6 month old sleeps She is much better for it.
Not having a full night of sleep affects your hormones, mental stability and health in general. You can't catch up just sleeping more in the weekend. In the same way, you can't compensate hours of sun by staying some hours in the shadow. The harm is already done.
• United Kingdom
Unfortunately the time I am most likely to feel sleepy and fancy an afternoon nap is between 2 and 3 pm - exactly the time when I need to fetch Little One from school! And in any case I'm usually rushing to try and get some work completed before they come home.
I wish I could come up with a smart answer but can't. I need to get sleep so I do not get sick so I try to get at least 9 hours sleep a night or even 8. Sometimes I am just caught up in something and need to finish it so do not get the sleep I need. I have to set a schedule and follow it.
Same here i have those sleep problems. Sometimes i take meds to just make myself sleep but then i get sleepy at work so i just take them in the weekends. Still having lack of sleep like according to my firbit i just sleep 3 to 4 hours