Do you ever feel guilty when you sleep in on the weekends? Ever roll over, look at your alarm clock and, to your horror, find that you slept until mid – or even late – morning?
For some people, sleeping in on the weekends is one of life’s greatest luxuries. For others, though, they’re wracked with guilt if they’re not awake when the sun comes up.
A small new American study showed that getting extra sleep for just two two consecutive nights countered the effect of short-term sleep deprivation.
“It gives us some hope that if there is no way to extend sleep during the week, people should try very hard to protect their sleep when they do get an opportunity to sleep in and sleep as much as possible to pay back the sleep debt,” said lead study author Josaine Broussard of the University of Colorado Boulder.
Folks who are chronically sleep-deprived are more likely to develop health problems such as obesity to cognitive deficits.
“By catching up on sleep on the weekends, people are reducing average extent and severity of the effects of sleep deprivation,” said the authors. “Ideally, we would all get sufficient sleep on a nightly basis.”