Most of us have been told that we need between 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night, with the magic number being 8 hours. While this is a great starting point, it is generic and the allocated hours of sleep you need per night can be heavily influenced by your sleep quality. Sure, we can sleep for 8-9 hours, but if half of that is tossing and turning, or waking up in the middle of the night, you probably won’t feel rested the next morning.
Another thing to consider is your genetics! Ever wonder why you need 9 hours of sleep and your friend can get away with 6? Genetic mutations can affect how long we need to sleep as well as what time we prefer to go to bed and how we handle sleep deprivation. That being said, we can’t change our genetics so the best way to ensure you’re getting enough sleep is to pay attention to your body’s needs - go to bed when you’re tired and take note of how you’re feeling when you wake up.
While we’re on the topic of genetics, age can also play a factor into how much sleep we need. As we get older, we can get away with less hours of sleep per night. School-aged children need 9 to 11 hours of sleep, while toddlers need 11-14 hours. As adults, we need about 7-9 hours and older adults, 7 to 8 hours.
All this being said, there are a lot of ways we can ensure we’re waking up well rested regardless of our genetic make up or hours of sleep. Getting good quality, uninterrupted sleep is key to waking up refreshed every morning. Check out our tips for sleeping better like how to set a sleep routine, or 4 tips for falling asleep.