The Destructive Power Of Insomnia: Why 7-8 Hours Of Restorative Sleep, And A Great Mattress- Is Essential To A Productive, Healthy, And Long Life

Consider a disease called FFI, or Fatal Familial Insomnia, caused by what is known as a prion protein disease of the brain, this killer deprives a person of the ability to sleep. It always results in death within several months to a few years. Fatal insomnia has no cure and involves progressively worsening inability to sleep, leading to hallucinations, delirium, dementia, and eventually, and without fail, death.

You’d think that throwing sleeping pills, and even strong drugs like barbiturates at a patient with FFI would be helpful…not so, in fact 75% of the time, it shortens lifespan even more. It’s an empirical example fo the fact that lack of sleep can cause death…even if it is in the most extreme cases.

The effects of sleep deprivation rapidly magnify the longer a person stays awake. Without sleep after 48 hours, a person’s cognitive performance markedly worsens, and crushing fatigue begins to dull the edges of the mind and exhausts the body to the point where everyday tasks become impossible.

And slightly beyond 48 hours, the brain will start entering short periods of complete unconsciousness, also known as micro-sleep. You could be sitting upright, eyes open, but like a West Word android plugged in to its charger, staring ahead into space, you are the undead. Like a laptop in sleep mode, you are no longer functioning until someone “taps your screen”.

Immediately sleep deprivation begins to take its toll on your physiology.It first attacks the immune system, reducing T-cell count, causing a surge in stress hormones, and your finely tuned biology descends into madness.

Studies show that people who don’t get quality sleep or enough sleep, meaning 7-8 hours per night, are much more likely to get ill after being exposed to a virus, like a common cold or a norovirus (intestinal virus). Lack of sleep can also affect how fast you bounce back if you do get sick.

We all cut corners with things like exercise, eating clean, even allowing life stressors like relationships, children, pets, and coworkers infiltrate our minds, slowly churning the cycle of occasional insomnia we’ve all experienced.We all cut corners with things like exercise, eating clean, even allowing life stressors like relationships, children, pets, and coworkers to infiltrate our minds, slowly churning the cycle of occasional insomnia we’ve all experienced.

I’d always thought that our need for sleep, much like our desire for food, drink, and social contact, was an individually scaled need, depending upon our own unique biology. Some people need a little more, older people need less, right? Your age, whether you are sedentary or active, your particular job, whether or not you are hyper, all combine to determine how much sleep you need, and if some people seem to function well on five hours a night and others need ten, that’s just biology, right?

Wrong. Totally wrong, in fact. A study of the sleep hygiene of more than 10,000 individuals around the world suggests that the amount of sleep adults need is essentially the same, regardless of dozens of variables. This global survey, published in the medical journal, Sleep, demonstrates that adults everywhere need 7-8 hours a night—no more and no less—in order to be crisp and functional, obtaining optimal performance from our brains without creating stress to our bodies..

When we cut corners on on sleep time, higher-order cognitive function—such as the ability to visualize complex patterns and solve even basic computations, is compromised.

Sleep Journal, as described in Wikipedia, is a monthly peer-reviewed medical journal covering research on sleep. Topics include basic and neuroscience studies of sleep, in vitro and animal models of sleep, studies in clinical or population samples, clinical trials, and epidemiologic studies.

The author of the study, a researcher at The Brain and Mind Institute at the University of Western Ontario, sorted out how a research team coordinated by neuroscientist Adrian Owen incorporated thousands of people into the online study. It was put together using social media and marketing through the BBC, gathering attention world wide.

More than 40,000 people from 148 countries signed up.

Many were culled from the group because of insufficient data, and each participant completed a detailed online questionnaire about their lifestyle, personal stories, medical histories, and sleep patterns.

Once their sleep habits were recorded, the participants completed a battery of 12 mental acuity tests. Complex puzzles assessed spatial, verbal and short-term memory as well deductive reasoning, ability to maintain extended attention span, planning skills, and clear expression ability.

The results were jaw dropping and stunning. Half of the sample group regularly slept less than 6.4 hours of sleep a night, an insidious marker that was associated with impaired problem-solving, out of focus reasoning, and poor verbal acuity. Participants who slept less than six hours a night failed to answer questions based on spatial rotation or grammatical reasoning correctly, and simply failed to complete very general tasks than those who got a full night’s rest.

Missing the occasional few hours here and there is one thing, but a sustained schedule of less than 6-7 hours of sleep each night is highly toxic and devastating to the your body. According to the study, getting four hours of sleep or less for an extended period is equivalent to stripping away eight years of your life, making it almost as toxic as smoking.

Guess what? Your body responds well to sleep, and offering even one night of a solid 8 hours can repair some of the damage. In the Sleep study, participants who slept for more hours than the previous evening, substantially improved their test scores all across the board.

What’s a key element to reducing insomnia and improving sleep patterns, so that you get 7-8 hours of restorative and energizing sleep? The right mattress. Having the perfect nest and adopting the best sleep habits for your own biology and your own creature comfort profile is mission critical. That’s why we’ve put together a list of our nine most popular mattresses that we personally recommend.

We call it our best of the best category. Nine mattresses, each unique in its design, the materials used, the quilting and covering, and the feel of each. One of them will likely work for you. Take a look and consider one of these options. Carefully vetted and researched, our editor, Marc Anderson, a bedding industry CEO, mattress designer and engineer for more than 25 years, personally selected these mattresses to provide the comfort, support, natural sleep inductive qualities, and pressure relieving elements you need. Check them out:

get 7-8 hours of quality sleep consistently on our “best of the best” mattress options

For the money, one of my top choices. The Dreamcloud Luxury Hybrid Mattress has a sumptuous cashmere quilted top that hugs you, and a thicker layer of gel infused memory foam beneath. Individually wrapped coils lift you so you don’t get buried in your mattress.
I’ve recommended it to hundreds of consumers. Excellent edge support, minimizes motion transfer. With my link, you’ll get $200 off, a free sheet set, 2 pillows, and a mattress protectory. A queen on sale: $899, free ship, 365 day trial. I’ve compared to retail store brands selling similar models for $3,000 and up.
Mar 20, 2019
Soft and sumptuous, and built for side and side/back sleepers, The Nolah Original 10” Bed is made with greener, cleaner foams. Their AirFoam™ layer sleeps cool and cozy and is excellent for shoulder pain. Nolah engineers claim this bed is proven to provide 4x better pressure relief on hips, shoulders, and back. Get two free pillows with my link. A solid lifetime warranty, and 120 night no questions asked trial.
Mar 20, 2019
Want a chemical free sleep surface? This outstanding natural latex hybrid bed is loaded with clean, chemical free ingredients.
Up top, there’s a breathable organic quilted top, and beneath you, your body floats on 4” of botanical Dunlop latex (Sri Lankan grown trees, best on the planet). Individually pocketed coils suspend and hover you above the underlying. layer of medium high density foam that won’t break down.
Free sheet set, 2 free latex pillows, and mattress protector included. Delivered with 365 day no questions asked trial , lifetime warranty. My #1 Hybrid Pure Latex/Coil Choice.
Jan 11, 2020
I’d call it an outstanding natural mattress that delivers supernatural comfort and levitating support. An organic outer quilted cover, a layer of eucalyptus infused rayon that cools.
An immediately responsive, 3” layer of pure botanical latex hovers above a pocketed coil system that evenly supports your body.
Owners note excellent lower back support. Queen $999, 25 year warranty, 100 night no BS trial. Couples, back and belly sleepers, unite! Click here to buy.
Jan 21, 2020
A uniquely designed foam hybrid mattress that offers a moderate degree of plushness and support. Copper infused foam provides antibacterial qualities. 10” finished height, 100 night trial, 20 year warranty, $950 for a queen. Free shipping. CLICK HERE FOR THE BEST DEAL and to check them out. Very forward thinking mattress system. Marc’s comments: Their secret: one of few companies online that uses their own factories, not pimping out their manufacturing to 3rd party fabricators. The benefit: Better ingredients since they own the whole enchilada and don’t have to sacrifice quality to pay the middleman.
Jul 24, 2019
Two models, delivering best in class pressure relief, precision spinal alignment, with a sumptuous, nest-like feel. Uses top of the line luxury components and textiles, safer, low VOC and formaldehyde free Certi-Pur foam. A side and back sleeper’s fantasy mattress. Get $300 off + w FREE pillows, free shipping, a great trial period, with unbeatable warranty. Our #1 Choice For Overall Best Mattress. 4.9 Rating out of 5, from a total of 6,572 Online Reviews.
Mar 20, 2019
A wonderful hybrid mattress without all of the middleman costs. $598 for a king size bed. Individually wrapped pocketed coils, and a unique hybrid foam layer system above providing bouncy yet pressure relieving and a cool to the touch knit outer cover. We like the quality of the gel foam used in this Texas made brand. 96% of customers keep this mattress, and with a solid 10 year warranty, you can’t go wrong. Great for side sleepers and nest sleepers. Click here to get the deal. A third of the price of identical “BigMattressInc” beds.
Apr 20, 2019
Habitat Furnishings offers the best digital sleep number style airbed on the market. For half the price of the big name brand, you’ll get a mattress that lets you control an infinite range of soft to firm settings. The bed is made with both natural latex and premium memory foam, and includes a quilted bamboo comforter top built right in! LED remote controls with memory setting. Sale offers $1200 off everyday prices. 90 Day Free Trial, solid warranty, made in USA!
Jun 16, 2020
Hybrid mattress featuring EMF and 5G radiation shielding system. FDA backed technology using static and charge removal surface. Detox, remove free radicals, and get restorative and recharged rest. An “information age” bed. Order the Anti-Aging Bed® or cover only for existing mattress. Click here to visit and to order.
Apr 6, 2020
Looking for great support, especially at hips and shoulders? Our team loves this unique coil and foam hybrid. Gel memory foam on top, a pocketed coil system below with zoned support for torso and hips. A unique feature: a foam edge which provides perimeter support for sitting and increases usable space on the mattress. Queen size $999, 120 Night Trial. A+ marks. Check out their full product line up here.
Jul 17, 2019

So if you want to deliver that quippy and crisp presentation filled with fantastic comebacks and barbs, solve a complex technical problem, masterfully parallel park, or play your best game of soccer or chess, treat your body and your mind to what it cries out for: a consistent 7-8 hours of sleep.