Screen Shot 2017-10-18 at 9.53.59 PM

Could Getting More Sleep Help You to Live Longer?

There’s a huge number of things you could be doing to extend your life and its quality. Every day a new study comes out claiming that doing something or other will give you an extra few years. Often completely contradicting previous advice. We need to exercise, but not too much. Eat a healthy and balanced diet while managing to fit in all the vitamins and minerals that we need, watching our weight and avoiding certain foods. We need to drink plenty of water, but too much could have adverse effects. You shouldn’t be online too much, but pursuing the right internet based hobbies could keep your brain young and alert. There always seems to be a very fine line between doing something that’s good for you and could extend your life, and overdoing it and increasing your risks of illness and the advice can be confusing.  

Sleep is one of these things. Sleeping the right amount can help to reduce stress, lower your blood pressure, boost circulation and skin tone, give your body a chance to recover from the day and allow its organs to function at their best. Don’t sleep enough, and you could feel stressed out, have mental health problems and be more likely to pick up illnesses.

Can You Over Sleep?

There is some evidence to suggest that sleeping too much can actually reduce your life expectancy. But, this is generally because people that sleep for more than 9 hours a night do so because they are unwell and may already be suffering from a terminal illness.

Most of us sleep for more 9 hours occasionally, if we’re overtired or need a good catch up. This won’t shave years off your lifespan. However, if you are finding yourself sleeping for more than 9 hours a night regularly with no apparent cause, you should see your GP. Either way, it’s fair to say that sleeping too much is a symptom of something that could decrease your life expectancy, not the cause itself.

What’s the Right Amount?


Well, this, like so many things in life, depends on you. There’s no right or wrong amount. How much sleep you need depends on your body, your metabolism, your stress and fitness levels, your diet and how active you are during the day. It could even vary week to week for the same person, depending on lifestyle changes. The right amount is what feels right for you. The amount of sleep that you need to feel rested and alert.

That said, for most of us, this is between 6 and 8 hours.

How do I Get More Sleep?

A bit more sleep could help you to live longer, but it’s not always easy to get. Try taking extra exercise, cutting caffeine from your diet, visiting Performance Plus Massage and Acupuncture Clinic, watching what you eat, and turning your screens off for an hour before bed. If these things don’t work and you are really struggling to get to sleep at night, a visit to your GP could help.

There are a lot of things that you can do to help increase your lifespan. But, sleeping more is probably one of the easiest lifestyle changes to make.