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What we need to know about phases of sleep

20 Phases of sleep

We all know that sleep is crucial for our health and one night of poor sleep will impact our day, when this lack of sleep is constant the negative effects increase but what happens while we sleep?  There are so many things going on in our brain and body that help us recover from the day and get ready for what´s to come.

Reading books and research, some divide the phases or stages of sleep in 4 others in 5 the way I see and to keep it simple is considering 5 phases:

1.- Phase one.- When we fall asleep our brain produces alpha and theta waves, this phase last just a couple minutes and it´s when we can be easily woken. If any night you fall asleep and after a couple of minutes you woke up with any noise you were in this phase. This phase of light sleep gives way to phase two.

2.- Phase two.- During this phase the brain waves decrease in frequency and increase in amplitude

3.- On phases three.- This phase of moderate sleep giving way to deep sleep is where it is harder to be awakened and the brain

4.- On phase four.- This phase is the deepest level of sleep and  is where delta waves or slow waves takes place.

This four phases are called non-rapid eye movement, after this four phases are completed we get to a rapid eye movement which is the fifth phase, while we sleep the brain cycle between non-rapid eye movement and rapid eye movement.

The first 4 phases which are part of the non-rapid eye movement are compromised of slow waves while the fifth phase which is the rapid eye movement our heart rate increase, our breathing gets faster and is the sleep phase where dreams occur. In this last phase is also when we can retain information, skills, improve memory and learning.

One complete sleep cycle going through all phases last around 90 minutes, each night we go through several cycles, you may go through 4 or 5 cycles per night depending on how many hours of sleep you get.

If you have sleep disorders it may be harder for you to fall asleep so you´ll get less sleep so you will go through less cycles, if you wake up in the night and you interrupt the cycle your body needs to start again from phase 1, the more you get awaken during the night chances are that you may never get to the phase of deep sleep which affects your entire sleep quality and you´ll get all the negative impacts of one night of poor sleep the next day.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

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