How much Sleep Do I Need? A Chart Will Tell

You’re reading the 3rd Installment of Help Me Sleep 101 series.

‘Sleep’ is now debatably one of the most discussed health topics out there. In the previous post of the series, you have read that the fixation of sleep schedule is the first strategy of obtaining a good night’s sleep. But to fix the hours, a data is needed which describes, how much sleep do we need. You’ll find the answer here.

The requirement of sleep varies person to person. While a person with 6 hours of sleep can function great, another person getting 8 hours of sleep may fail to function as efficiently. There were people who could prove themselves able just by sleeping for 4 hours, like Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar (not vindicated). A Greek philosopher used to hold a heavy metallic substance in his hand, so that whenever he felt drowsy, the substance fell from his hand with a bang, loud enough to wake him up from drowsiness. (See, the point- ‘Myth’ below.)

Living in this fast pacing 21st century, 6 hours of sleep may sound pretty good. But researches indicate that, hours of sleep less than the requirement is nothing but a recipe to develop serious and long-term sleep deprivation.

Myth: Six hours of sleep is enough

According to some researches of University of California, San Francisco, there are some people with a gene for who six hours of sleep at night seems enough. But this gene is quite atypical existing in less than 3% people. For the rest of 97%, six hours of night’s sleep is far below the mark.

What a study says about it

Animal researches say that sleep is as indispensable as food. A rat, whose average life span is 2-3 years, lives only 5 weeks if they are deprived of REM sleep (a stage of sleep), and 2-3 weeks if they are deprived of every sleep phase.

See the chart


Required time for Sleep | Adapted from Wikipedia

Signs of being sleep Deprived

Less than 7 hours of night’s sleep generally makes one sleep deprived. One even cannot realize the serious consequences of being sleep deprived.

The signs-

  • If you fall asleep within five minutes you go to bed. Normal is – 10 minutes.
  • If you solely depend on an alarm clock to wake up on time.
  • If you feel dozy when you’re at important meeting, conference, classes etc.
  • If you fall asleep while watching Televisions or at the time of relaxation.
  • If you have everlasting desire to take naps.
  • If you face great difficulty waking up at morning.

Consequences of Sleep Deprivation

If you think you’re sleep deprived, you probably have made a ‘sleep debt’, which has to be paid off. Consequences of Sleep Deprivation are way serious like-

  • Making error
  • Be short of  motivation
  • Fatigue, lethargy
  • Wrong Judgment
  • Complexity in making right decisions
  • Amplified risk of developing heart disease, diabetes etc
  • Gaining weight
  • Reduced immunity
  • Stunt growth of adolescents
  • Bad temper or irritability
  • Unable to cope up with stress
  • Reduced creativity
  • Memory Problem
  • Increased risk of accidents

See how serious the consequences are. Therefore, try not to sleep less but to sleep the adequate amount.

To the readers 

  • How many hours did you sleep yesterday?
  • Do you have any sleep tips to share with the other readers?
  • Do you want to argue with any of the points in our article?
  • Did you like our article?

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Help Sleep Team.