During the holidays you may end missing out on valuable sleep, late nights will turn into a habit and oversleeping in the morning will feel bliss. But this all results in a sleep debt, which is when you have missed out on hours of sleep, so therefore you need to catch up on those hours.

Sleep debt is the difference between the amount of sleep that you should be getting (ideally 8 hours) and the amount you are actually getting. Studies have shown that such short-term sleep deprivation can lead to a foggy brain, distorted vision, impaired driving, short term memory loss. The long-term effects can lead to obesity, insulin resistance, and even heart disease.

The good news is that you can pay back your sleep debt. Although it can’t just be paid back in one extended snooze session. The best way to pay back your sleep debt is too have an extra hour of sleep every night. For the chronically sleep deprived, it is best to take it easy for a few months as then you can ease back into a natural sleep pattern.

As you erase sleep debt, your body will come to rest at a sleep pattern that is specifically right for you. A study has found that the more tired we get, the less tired we actually feel. So just because you have been drinking energy drinks and coffee, don’t let that fool you into thinking you aren’t tired.

In summary, it is definitely possible to pay back your sleep debt. Although the best way to do it is to ease your body into a longer sleep period, ideally an extra hour of sleep every night as opposed just having a huge nap in the daytime. Then after a week of additional hours of sleep, you should have repaid your sleep debt.


24 and living in London. Production manager within the bed industry. I have a strong passion for beds and football. In my spare time I love going on long car journeys around Europe with my lovely wife, Cara.

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