ATLANTA — ATLANTA—This weekend will cost us an hour of sleep as Daylight Saving Time begins, but many people find they’re exhausted even after a full night’s sleep.

Most adults need between seven to nine hours of sleep to function at their best. It can be frustrating when you get the necessary hours but wake up feeling like you’ve been shortchanged.

During a normal night, you alternate between light and deep sleep. Experts on the topic tell us seven or more hours of that kind of sleep should leave you rested and restored.

If you wake up as tired as you were when you went to bed, something is keeping you from the deep, restorative sleep that you desperately need.

Dr. David Westerman at Northside Hospital’s Sleep Disorders Center tells us the issue is likely some kind of sleep disorder.

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“They could have a sleep disorder causing the sleep pattern or architecture to be interrupted without the person waking up,” says Dr. Westerman.  

The most common issue is sleep apnea. That’s the disorder that briefly interrupts your breathing while you sleep. Often you don’t even know it’s happening but you know something is wrong when you wake up tired.

You may have heard of restless leg syndrome. There’s another condition that causes you to move both your legs and arms during sleep without you knowing it. You wake up tired and irritable.

Depression or chronic pain can keep you from a peaceful sleep.

Dr. Westerman says there’s no such thing as “banking” sleep.

The 12-hours you got on Thursday won’t do you any good when you get only two hours of sleep Friday night.

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