Don's Home Health Sleep Contact


last updated 22 April 2020

See also Sleep Aids
and Sleep Applications for your phone or watch

Types of Sleep:

  • Light Sleep - You drift in and out of sleep. Your eyes move slowly, your muscle activity is slow, and you would be easy to wake up.
  • Eye movements and brain waves slow down, your body temperature drops, and your heart rate slows down.
  • Deep Sleep - Extremely slow brain waves called delta waves are intermixed with smaller, faster brain waves.
  • You stay in deep sleep and your brain almost exclusively produces the slow delta waves.
  • REM Sleep - Now your eyes are closed but move rapidly from side-to-side, due to the intense dream and brain activity you go through in this stage.

  • Sleep Quality:
    Americans spend an average of 7 hours and 18 minutes in bed each night. They go to bed at 11:39 p.m., wake up at 7:09 a.m., spend 23.95 minutes snoring, have an average sleep quality of 74.2 percent, and rate their wake-up mood at 57 on a scale of 100. Feb., 2019
    Source: What we know about America's healthiest, happiest and best-rested people - Sleep Cycle
    The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) recently released the key indicators of good sleep quality, as established by a panel of experts.

    Given the precipitous increase in the use of sleep technology devices, the key findings are timely and relevant. This information complements the data these devices provide, helping millions of consumers interpret their sleep patterns. The report comes as the first step in NSF's effort to spearhead defining the key indicators of good sleep quality. The key determinants of quality sleep are included in a report published in Sleep Health. They include:

    • Sleeping more time while in bed (at least 85 percent of the total time)
    • Falling asleep in 30 minutes or less
    • Waking up no more than once per night; and
    • Being awake for 20 minutes or less after initially falling asleep.

    Optimal values for sleep each stage are 5% Awake, 25% REM, 35% deep, and 35% percent light sleep.
    Source: How does pillow calculate sleep quality? - Pillow
    Medical Sleep Analysis:
    There are a bunch fo sleep problems:
    Insomnia - A general term for not sleeping well at least 3 nights a week. Causes include: Anxiety, stress, and depression, which can be caused by trauma, worry about school, work, health, finances, family and more.
    Other problems Sleep Apnea (breathing problems), Narcolepsy Restless Legs Syndrome, Circadian Rhythm Disorders.

    The most accurate sleep analysis is done in a sleep lab:
    Polysomnogram - You sleep in a lab and it records your brain waves, heartbeats and breathing as you sleep. It also charts your eye movements, limb movements and oxygen in your blood.

    Actigraphy - An actigraph is worn like a watch on the wrist of your non-dominant hand and measures activity through light and movement. is used to assess cycles of activity and rest over several days to several weeks. Your doctor may ask you to wear an actigraph for a period of time to get an objective measurement of your sleep schedule.

    CPAP Titration Study - Used to calibrate continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy. CPAP is a common treatment used to manage sleep-related breathing disorders including obstructive sleep apnea, central sleep apnea and hypoventilation and hypoxemia.

    See: Sleep Education - Sleep Disorders Facts and Healthy Sleep Tips

    Sleep Problems in the Elderly Web sites include the American Sleep Disorders Association (, the National Sleep Foundation ( and Sleep Home Pages ( A short afternoon nap (<30 min.) improves alertness in the afternoon. Afternoon alertness was better than morning alertness after a nap and worse if they took no nap.
    Some say you can nap for up to 1 hour.
    Source: Horoshima Univ Study. Tamaki, Shirota, Hayashi, Hori Students who took a 15 min. nap after lunch had fewer errors on a logical reasoning test and were more alert compared to when they did not nap. However, memory test scores were only slightly better. Source: Takahashi, M. and Arito, H., Maintenance of alertness and performance by a brief nap after lunch under prior sleep deficit, Sleep, 23:813-819, 2000. Summary at Sleep Trackers
    Types of sleep
    UP3: The world's most advanced tracker - The Jawbone Blog
    The suggested bedroom temperature should be between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit for optimal sleep.
    If your room is cool, rather than warm, it will be much easier to shut your eyes for the night. Thermostat settings far lower or higher than what's recommended could lead to restlessness and can also affect the quality of [sleep_term id="1219"], the stage in which you dream.

    If you're still a troubled sleeper, in addition to the cooler room temperature, you should try placing a hot water bottle at your feet or wearing socks. This will help dilate your blood vessels faster and push your internal thermostat to a more ideal setting. Best Temperature for Sleep |

    People who sleep in hot environments have been found to have elevated levels of the stress hormone cortisol the next morning.
    A study of people with a sleep disorder found that they slept longer in temperatures of 61 degrees Fahrenheit versus 75 degrees.
    The most common recommendation, cited by places like the Cleveland Clinic and the National Sleep Foundation |, is 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit.
    A neurologist in Virginia told that the magic number is 65. Others have advised an upper limit of 64.

    Regulating the temperature of just your feet or head is more precise than adding blankets, and more efficient than trying to regulate an entire room. (In truth, you could go much, much colder on the thermostat by simply adding more clothing and blankets. I've slept very well while camping in frigid weather with the right sleeping bag.
    Summer Sleeping:
    Summer sleeping is not as ideal, and many people do report getting worse sleep then. But it's possible to sleep well outside that ideal temperature range. A lot can be accomplished with a strategically placed fan. It's also definitely possible to train oneself to sleep without covers--without a sheet, even.> What is the ideal temperature for sleep? | The Atlantic December;, 2019

    Research has also found that room temperatures as low as 60.8 degrees are best when people pile on the blankets.
    WebMD says 60° is too cold for most people. They recommend 65-72° says 60-67° is best.
    Taking a warm bath will also help the body cool down before bed.
    Women like it warmer than men.
    and Best Temperature for Sleeping | Men's Health

    Sleep Monitoring with Activity Trackers
    Sleep Apps
    Recommended Thermostat settings Natural Patterns of Sleep | Healthy Sleep
    What are the different stages of the sleep cycle? - Quora
    Sleep Aids
    Half Your Brain Stands Guard When Sleeping In A New Place : NPR

    Return to Health.

    last updated 8 Sep 2002