eli5 i was wondering how sleeping actually works.


we sleep when we get tired, yes. but how do we get up rested? i mean our body keeps on working and working. which means we keep consuming energy right? so how do we feel more energetic, more rested as we wake up?

In: 70

As we stay awake our body produces the chemical in our brain called ‘adenosine’, adenosine has many uses but it primarily regulates our heart beat. But as a side effect this chemical causes us to become sleepy.

Our body uses sleep to rejuvenate itself in many ways, such as diverting energy to repair physical damage and fight off disease. It also breaks down the adenosine in our brain.
So when we wake up our body is clear of adenosine (not entirely but still) and we feel fully awake, and the process continues.

So our body uses adenosine as a sort of intensive to go to sleep so it can do those vital functions, same with how when we’re hungry our body makes our stomach hurt to give us reason to eat.


What about those of us who wake up feeling as tired and crappy as we did when we went to bed? Even after 8+ hours?

Does that indicate our bodies aren’t clearing adenosine?

As I understand, the body has a cleaning system. This system does not extend to the brain. The brain has it’s own cleaning system which only works at night. We’re still not entirely clear on the science as to why we need sleep and what all is going on, but this is the main function not occurring outside sleep which we need to stay healthy. (another important function is memory consolidation)

i do not know. but i guess it is because your brain is not taking any info in and process the input that makes one feel better.