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How Sleep Works – The Two-Process Model of Sleep Regulation


Sleep is an important and common part of everybody’s life. With proper nutrition, food, and exercise, sleep is one of the most important aspects of life, for a healthy lifestyle. We normally spend around one-third of our life sleeping.

According to modern sleep research by Nathaniel Kleitman and friends, who discovered different Rapid Eye Movement (REM) and Non-Rapid Eye Movement (NREM) sleep types in 1953 – and later William C. Dement, who informed about the night’s sleep, that it consists of many repeating cycles of sleep, all having different sleep types.

The sleep-wake design is developed by two personal medical techniques within your body system, which connect together and balance each other. This design was first posted by the European specialist Alexander Borbély in the beginning of 1980’s.

It was known as the two-process kind of sleep-wake control. The two procedures are known as homeostatic procedure and the circadian procedure.

This circadian process is also called as Process C and Homeostatic process also called as Process S.

These processes work together at times and get against one another at several times. The wishes and situations of a person often tend to change the circadian process and this keeps us from sleeping when we actually should be sleeping.

The Homeostatic Process

Our bodies try to maintain themselves in a very narrow range. The temperature of our body regulates in homeostatic process –and stays within those few degrees. The salinity and pH of our bodily fluids also do the same.

This seems to be simplistic yet the sleep homeostasis will be only maintained by assuming that there is proper and quantitative need to sleep, which builds up when the human body and mind are awake. This also reduces while sleeping.

Homeostatic pressure of sleep does not only depend on how long you were awake, it also depends on the activeness of your body while you are awake.

While homeostatic sleep generally improves throughout the day, it successfully makes a person more and drowsier as the day goes on. It is countered and moderated by the circadian generate for excitement, at least until delayed night, when the circadian time slackens off its notifying program and starts sleep-inducing melatonin manufacturing instead.

This reveals the so-called “sleep gate”, the actual way in which this happens is still not completely recognized.

The circadian process

This process does help you a lot in keeping homeostatic process in control. It also helps you to sleep all through the night and not feel sleepy during daytime.

Without the presence of the circadian process, we humans would sleep like the polyphasic sleep intermittently.

The built-in circadian clock of our bodies, that is situated in our brains in the exact middle of the hypothalamus organ, is the most important mechanism of the brain that controls the sleep time for us.

This circadian clock does not depend on the hours of continuous sleep or wakefulness. This internal clock of our body is coordinated brilliantly with the day and night cycle over the 24-hour period.

This process regulates the sleep patterns of our bodies along with the feeding patterns, body temperature, cell regeneration, and many other biological activities.

But circadian rhythms alone are not adequate to cause and control sleep. It successfully informs the body that it needs to rest after a certain time and increases. The longer we have been asleep, the more the pressure to sleep dissipates, and the more the likelihood of awakening increases.

Sleep has certain quantitative sizing on how long it continues and also a qualitative sizing on how extreme the Non-Rapid Eye Movement sleep (NREM) is. The Physiologists easily evaluate the concentration of Non-Rapid Eye Movement sleep (NREM), but Rapid Eye Movement sleep (REM) sleep is believed to have no such quantitative size.

This two-process model names the regulation of these variables as sleep intensity and sleep duration i.e., homeostatic process and circadian process respectively.

Always remember, the two-process models are only a model. It assumes Process S and Process C are independent, but in reality, they are not.

How do we identify how good is a mattress?

A mattress is used as a bed for supporting the reclining body. It consists of a quilted case that is made up of heavy cloth along with a few basic materials like cotton, straw, hair, foam rubber, gel etc. Sometimes it also is made up of a framework of metal springs.

Memory foam and Innerspring, per some review site, are so far which have remained for several years and get more popular each year.

It mainly consists of polyurethane and also additional chemicals increasing its viscosity and density. Memory foams of higher-density help in softening its reaction to the body heat, which in turn allows it to change the temperature of the body to a warm in just a few minutes.

Foams that are newer will recover to their original shape much quicker. Memory foam is used in medical field for cushion, in intensive care units, and in wheelchair seat cushions.

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