What is Circadian Rhythm?
After you read the title to this blog, you were probably wondering what the heck circadian rhythm is. We know that it’s a big and scary word, but it’s actually a fairly simple concept. We will start off by saying that it is very important and that you should really care about it. Circadian rhythm is basically everyone’s sleep pattern. It consists of your cycles of alertness and sleepiness. There are plenty of things that could affect it and it changes over time. Classic Mattress and Furniture cares a great deal about how well you sleep every night and we hope that we can help you get better rest so that your circadian rhythm is perfectly healthy and normal.
Rises and Dips
Your circadian rhythm determines the rises and dips in energy that you have throughout your day. This is determined by how much sleep you get in a night or during the day. Everyone’s rises and dips tend to happen around the same time every day. The reason you always feel like taking naps around the same time everyday is due to your circadian rhythm.
The biggest dips in energy happen between the times of 2 am and 4 am for most adults and between 1 pm and 3 pm when it’s time for the after-lunch nap. Everyone tends to feel more dramatic dips and rises in energy if they are not very well-rested. It isn’t really any secret that being tired and sleepy makes you cranky and moody and you may notice the next time you are really tired, that you get cranky around the same times in the day. With that being said, the more sleep you get, the less you will feel these dramatic dips and changes in energy levels. Since you are well-rested, your body isn’t begging you to sleep and you aren’t fighting your natural urges that much.
The Rhythm of Your Brain
Everyone’s circadian rhythm is controlled by the hypothalamus portion of the brain. This is largely affected by brightness and lightness. When it begins to get dark outside, our eyes send signals to the hypothalamus, telling it that it is time to get tired, and so the brain starts to produce melatonin. This is why most of us tend to get tired in the nighttime. This also explains why it is so hard for some shift workers to get rest during the day and work at night. Our bodies naturally want us to sleep at night.
Your circadian rhythm tends to work best when you’re more well-rested, so be sure to get plenty of sleep. It also really helps to stick to a regular sleep schedule, even on the weekends. This is something that can also change as you get older, which is a big reason why older people like to go to bed so early.
Men and Women
There are notable differences in the circadian cycles of men and women. This isn’t necessarily true for everybody, but it was found amongst a lot of people. Men have been found to be night owls while most women are early risers. Men’s circadian cycles tend to run longer than women’s so they get less tired in the evenings. In fact, they run 6 minutes longer than women’s on average. Women are more likely to go to bed and wake up earlier than men, and because of this, they are more likely to suffer from sleep disturbances and insomnia.
While that does sound terrible for women, men do not have it easy either. They are much more likely to be affected by a lack of sleep. They are hit a lot harder by changes in mood when they have not slept. They experience far more dramatic dips and raises in energy compared to women. Women can recover much faster from a lack of sleep and changes in their circadian cycles. However, women are much more likely to experience dips in energy at later times in the evenings. These differences in sleep patterns for men and women cause more injuries for women in the evening and more injuries for men during the day compared to the opposite sex.
Living and Learning
Of course, you can teach your sleep cycle to rise and dip to your convenience, but this takes a lot of discipline and time. You basically have to force your body to sleep or not sleep, which can feel terrible at times.
As a company that makes custom mattresses, your quality of sleep is very important to us. We are here to help you out the best we can with our custom mattresses and furniture. We hope this was helpful and if you are interested in a better night’s (or day’s) sleep, feel free to pay us a visit or give us a call.