5 More Minutes! Oversleeping Exhausts Us

I don’t know about you, but I’m certainly guilty as hell of oversleeping, hitting the snooze button, and committing extensive and rather egregious internal justifications for squeezing in just one more minute of sleeping in, regardless of whether or not I can really afford it in my schedule.  I’ve already covered here what has worked for me to try to get myself from my bed, collected together for the day, and out the door, but I think that it’s worth talking about what happens when you sleep in too much.

  1. Your sleep cycle works in 90-120 minute bursts, which means that when you wake up naturally before your alarm, and then roll over, you’re not getting more useful sleep.  You’ve managed to start a REM sleep cycle that you probably can’t finish, and will be more tired for it.
  2. Consistent oversleeping is a condition known as hypersomnia, and can often be indicative of other, serious medical conditions.  And has the lovely side effect of making you feel more tired when you wake up, causing a cycle of fatigue that no amount of sleeping will cure.  Get up!  …And to a doctor if the issue is ongoing, and doesn’t have a clear cause.
  3. Chronic oversleeping (i.e. 10+ hours a day) has been linked to higher BMI’s and risk for psychological disorders.  While there may be days, particularly after significantly above average days of exertion, or stretches of unavoidable long awake time days, where you’ll sleep in, if you find yourself doing so every day, you should seriously considered having your sleep assessed.  There are some people for whom this type of sleep pattern is simply how their bodies work, but the health risks can be substantial.

Take care of yourselves, would you?  And get try out one of those daylight imitating alarm clocks if it helps.  Or one that runs away.  Whatever works!

How do you manage to fight off the alarm clock blues?

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