So what happens when we close our eyes at night?
A lot of people think the brain is inactive during sleep, but science tells a different story. The typical adult goes through 4-5 sleep cycles between the time at lights-out and the time at wake up. These cycles include alterations between the two main types of sleep mentioned in previous posts; Non-REM (Rapid Eye Movement) and REM sleep. Non-REM sleep has three stages ranging from light (1) to deep (3). Most of our deep sleep occurs early in the night.
During this time the body and brain activity slow’s down as the processes for physical recovery needed after activities such as lifting weights, physical work or daily activity occurs. REM sleep is when most dreams happen, and during REM the brain is very active. REM episodes occur on average every 90 minutes. Most of our REM sleep occurs late in the sleep period, and while the exact purpose of REM sleep is not clear, it seems necessary for memory, learning, or mental restoration.
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