Analysis of one million nights of sleep data revealed

Over a million nights of recorded sleep from thousands of people have been collected by a tech company called Dreem. The company aims to help people sleep better by tracking brain activity, breathing, heart rate, and movement through a device called Dreem 2.

Dreem has analyzed the data they have collected and found some interesting information about sleep.

In the analysis, the company found out that people who sleep alone can sleep five minutes faster than average. Compared to people who are sleeping with someone else, those who slept solo had 20% more deep sleep. This is the type of sleep that’s important in the cycle as it enables proper brain function and memory.

Perhaps the reason why couples who sleep beside each other are getting less deep sleep is because they have different preferences. These can involve how they like to fall asleep, the temperature inside the bedroom, the type of sheets they like, the time they go to bed, and so many other factors.

“People aren’t really that good at sleeping together and the older you get, the worse it gets. As people get older and they develop breathing problems and movement disorders, they’ll wake each other up,” said Jared Minkel, a clinical assistant professor at Brown University and director of adult behavioral sleep medicine at Rhode Island Hospital.

Depending on where a person is from, there are myths and legends about the full moon that they have grown up with. Based on the analysis by Dreem, the full moon does affect people.

When there’s a full more, it took people 9% more time to fall asleep. During this time, they only got 7% less deep sleep.

“It seems that it happens even if the amount of light is the same. It happens the same if it’s cloudy,” said the co-founder and CTO of Dreem, Soulet de Brugiere.

There really is no clear explanation as to what causes disruptions in sleep during the full moon. Dreem believes that this might have something to do with humans and their age-old reactions with the full moon such as danger.

“The idea with the full moon is that it’s more an inherited thing from the past, not just a behavior coming from how it’s a bit lighter outside,” de Brugiere adds.

Dreem has also concluded that if you stayed up late the night before, it doesn’t mean that you would be able to fall asleep faster the following night.

Based on its data, people who stayed up later than their usual still took the same amount of time getting to sleep. If a person stays up late on a more regular basis, this could lead them to fall asleep faster.

According to an associate professor of neurology at the University of Michigan Sleep Disorders Center, Cathy Goldstein, people need to go to bed and wake up at around the same time every night.

On weekends, people tend to fall asleep and wake up at a much later time. Sleeping in on weekends won’t make up for the hours of sleep you have lost in previous days.

“If you know you need eight hours of sleep to feel well-rested and you’re only getting six during the weekdays, you won’t be able to make that up on the weekends,” adds Goldstein.

According to Soulet de Brugière, the saying ” Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise” might not be entirely true.

After analyzing the data, what Dreem realized is the importance of how long someone sleeps. It also highlighted how late sleepers might be getting better sleep.

“People who are late sleepers — as I am — we suffer a lot from the vision that we are lazy people, that we don’t want to wake up,” de Brugière said.

While those who go to bed early can sleep more, those who sleep late took less time to fall asleep. The data also showed that they got deeper sleep and woke less through the whole night.

“Going to bed too early is a mistake. If you want to shift what time you go to bed, you have to start with your wake up time,” adds Minkel.

About the Author

Ara Chua
A writer who is open to penning almost anything and everything under the sun. In her free time, she likes to dream of faraway places and to sing along to BTS.

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