Phase 1 - Your eye and body movements slow down and your body enters into a light sleep phase. During that time you can be woken up easily.
Phase 2 - The eye movement stops and your brain waves (a measure of the activity level of the brain) become slower.
Phase 3 - Your body enters its first phase of deep sleep and it might be very difficult to wake you up.
Phase 4 - The body enters its second stage of deep sleep and it might also be difficult to wake you up during that time.
Phase 5 - Also called Rapid Eye Movement, that's when dreams take over!
The key to waking up refreshed and energised in the morning is to ensure that both deep sleep stages are uninterrupted. It is when your body is frequently deprived of those essential deep sleep phases, that you may start experiencing health problems associated with fatigue.
Consequences of poor sleep
Disturbed sleep can have a significant impact on your health, relationships, mood and concentration. A poor sleep can result in:
* Feeling tired all day with a lack of energy
* Finding it hard to concentrate and cope with daily pressures
* Stress and worry
* Irritability and tension
* Difficulty in making decisions
* Slow reactions to traffic signals. This causes many accidents on the road each year!
"The main reason for sleep problems is that we can only rest if we have fulfilled all our needs for the day. When this is not so, the body is unable to let go, so we do not get to the deepest period of sleep, we only sleep in a forced, stressed and anxious way." Freud's views on sleep