Sleep can be divided into 2 main phases: NREM and REM.
The NREM phase usually lasts between 80 and 100 minutes. This is followed by a REM phase lasting about 15 minutes. This cycle repeats 4-5 times overnight.
Sleep cycle interesting facts
1. The longer we sleep, the more REM phase lengthens, which may last more than 40 minutes in the final cycle. The NREM phase is shortened.
2. During the NREM phase, blood pressure drops, the metabolic rate slows down, and breathing and heart rate slow down. This is the time when the body is resting.
3. During the NREM phase, body temperature drops by half a degree.
4. Sleep is the best medicine. During the NREM phase, the levels of certain hormones rise and wounds heal faster.
5. During REM sleep, brain activity increases, heart rate increases, and breathing becomes irregular.
6. In studies in rats, it was observed that a disruption of the REM phase could lead to death within a few weeks. This is due to the deposition of toxic proteins in the brain.
7. People suffering from narcolepsy during the day (while awake) enter REM sleep.
8. During REM sleep, brain activity is more like waking than sleeping.
9. People who are blind from birth also move their eyeballs while they sleep.
10. In newborns, the REM phase lasts as much as 80% of sleep time.
11. During the REM phase, we subconsciously analyze various problems of everyday life. Sometimes we can wake up with a ready solution.
12. REM phase disturbance negatively affects long-term memory.
13. Drinking alcohol shortens the REM phase.
14. During REM sleep, the brain organizes all the information it collects from the previous day, storing it in long-term memory.
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What is the NREM sleep phase?
This is a slow-phase sleep in which the eyes move slowly. It is a deep sleep. Theta waves appear in the brain, followed by delta waves.
What is REM sleep phase?
This is the phase of sleep where the eyes move rapidly. During the REM phase, dreams occur.
What does REM stand for?
It is short for “rapid eye movement”.
Do dreams occur during the NREM phase?
During the NREM phase, dreams may appear in the form of sensations or color visualizations.
When do we remember our dreams?
We remember dreams most often when we wake up during REM sleep.