Why Aging Is Destroying Your Sleep (And How To Wake Up Refreshed)

As we age we experience some fundamental shifts to the quality and duration of our sleep. On average, older adults experience more awakenings at night, less deep sleep, and they tend to shift their bed and wake times earlier.

In this video, sleep expert Dr. Michael Breus explains some of the science behind how and why our sleep changes, the biological processes that shift as we age, and why quality sleep when we're younger is essential to staving off cognitive decline when we're older.

📺 To learn how your chronotype can influence your bedtime routine, check out our video:

🖥️ If you’re ready to take actionable steps to get better sleep, Dr. Breus has developed a 28-day Sleep Wellness Program just for you. With on-demand video, daily emails, and a Sleep Wellness Guide, his program uses science-backed techniques to improve your sleep in as little as three minutes per day! Learn more here:
➡️ Enter code SleepDoctorYT for 20% off!

🧑🏻‍💻 Take our Sleep Quiz to receive some of Dr. Breus’s personalized sleep recommendations and begin your journey to better sleep!

0:00 How Does Sleep Change as we Age?
1:22 Explaining the Changes in Sleep
4:58 Changes in Brain Activity
5:48 Poor Sleep is an Indicator of Your Overall Health
7:23 Sleep and Cognitive Decline
9:28 Understanding the Glymphatic System

😴 Michael Breus, Ph.D., is a double board-certified clinical psychologist and sleep expert. He's been in practice since 1999 and helped thousands of patients improve their sleep. Dr. Breus has written five books on sleep and conducted over 1,000 interviews to the press and public.

#sleepbetter #aging #sleepscience

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About the Author: Joy Packard


    1. You gotta buy his 28 day sleep wellness program to find out apparently

  1. It’s Nature’s way of telling you: you won’t be around much longer, don’t waste so much time sleeping.

  2. Someone naps because they are physically tired and the body requires more rest, it’s not because they are bored, that’s stupid.

  3. No solutions offered to try in order to wake up refreshed (as you mentioned in the title). I’m new here; this is not impressive and doesn’t encourage me to subscribe if you are just going to lead viewers on.

  4. I sleep with an O2 ring that vibrates when SPO2 drops to 88% or heart rate drops below 45 BPM. When it vibrates, I’m usually on my back, and so I simply roll over to my side, and my SPO2 rises immediately to stop the vibration — and I continue dreaming. I don’t even remember it the next day, but I can see the event in the sleep data. Q: Is there any data that suggest what normal SPO2 levels are during the various phases of sleep?

  5. We all know that bad sleep is a problem. But the real problem is how to solve that problem.

  6. I am 61. I am fortunate (and grateful) for sleeping very well, otherwise I couldn’t do my job properly (I’ve been a professional aircraft pilot for 2/3 of my life). I can get awaken by some strange noise or by my german shepherd poking me, go downstairs, open the door for her, climb back and fall asleep in a matter of minutes (I very seldom “flip beefs” in bed). I try to eat well / hydrate well / exercise a little (swim / take walks). Whenever possible, I sleep between 7 and 8 hours in a row. It depends on my flight duty periods…it is what it is.

  7. I wonder how much of this could be explained from a por diet over the lifetime. If a study was done between people on the standard western diet and people on better diets such as paleo, keto, carnivore and pescatarian etc., that would be interesting.

    1. Data indicates that a plant-based diet carrie’s the highest longevity protection. And vegan diets are on the rise! Welcome to the 4th quarter, fellow centenarian wannabes!

    2. Also other “sleep info channels” have much more useable info older persons. My sleep times have changed but I still get the good numbers of sleep hours I need and awaken happier than ever!

  8. I was waiting for some advice towards the end of this video, but none was forthcoming. So all doom and gloom as we get older? May as well pull the plug now.

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