The Relationship Between Sleep and Heart Rate in Adults - Inn Mattress

Sleep is essential for overall health and well-being, but have you ever wondered how your heart rate during sleep affects your health? In this article, we’ll explore the relationship between sleep and heart rate in adults – including what’s considered a normal range of heart rate during sleep, factors that can affect it, and how it impacts your overall health.

Understanding Heart Rate During Sleep

Your heart rate naturally slows down during sleep as part of the body’s natural restorative processes. According to the American Sleep Apnea Association (ASAA), an average adult’s resting heart rate is typically between 60-100 beats per minute (BPM) while awake. However, when you’re sleeping, that range generally decreases to 40-60 BPM.

During deep stages of non-rapid eye movement (NREM) or slow-wave sleep (SWS), which usually occur early in the night after falling asleep according to research conducted by Dr. Michael Breus from The Sleep Doctor Institute , heartbeat can even dip below 40 BPM before returning back up again later on with rapid eye movement (REM) or light stage of NREM/sleep onset.

So if you’ve ever woken up feeling rested but noticed your Fitbit says your overnight HR was below or above what’s considered “normal,” don’t panic – these fluctuations are normal throughout a typical night’s sleep cycle!

Factors Affecting Heart Rate During Sleep

Several factors can affect heart rates during different stages of sleep as well as throughout nightly cycles:

  • Age: Older people often have slower resting rates due to changes related to aging.
  • Physical fitness level: People who exercise regularly may experience lower resting HRs than those who do not.
  • Body composition: People with more muscle mass may also experience lower RRs at rest.

In addition, some external factors, such as caffeine or alcohol consumption or use of certain medications, can also impact heart rate during sleep. It’s worth noting that these external factors can also disrupt normal sleep patterns and affect the overall quality of your sleep.

Why Is Heart Rate During Sleep Important?

According to a 2013 study published in “Circulation,” the journal of the American Heart Association, higher overnight heart rates are associated with an increased risk for cardiovascular diseases such as hypertension, coronary artery disease (CAD), and stroke.

Researchers believe that elevated nighttime heart rates may be indicative of underlying health problems such as chronic stress or obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) – a serious condition in which breathing is repeatedly interrupted during sleep. In some cases, these issues may even lead to sudden cardiac arrest syndrome – when the heartbeat stops completely- especially when combined with other risk factors like obesity

On the other hand,a low overnight HR may not necessarily mean there is something wrong either.Put simply,sleeping below 40 BPM at times generally does not necessarily cause harm.It could actually reveal success in managing modifiable contributing factor including physical fitness levels,diet habits,and regular exercise routine.

An optimal resting HR should depend more on what feels good to someone on a daily basis rather than just any number alone.If you feel well-rested after waking up and have no history combined with symptoms then perceiving the lowest range falls under expected findings if it isn’t accompanied by any clinical disease

It’s essential for people who notice fluctuations outside their own baseline values over multiple night’s measurements alongside abnormal symptoms like chest pain,palpitations,fatigue,to seek medical attention sooner than later.

For this reason, monitoring your overnight heart rate using wearable technology may provide useful insights into your overall health status according to Dr.Breus adding : “heart-rate variability provides early indicators about possible changes in wellness”. By better understanding how different lifestyle factors impact our nightly restorative processes we’re able to make small changes that can lead to much larger results.


In conclusion, heart rate during sleep is an important aspect of overall health and well-being. Understanding what’s normal for you in terms of resting heart rate while asleep and how it fluctuates throughout the night could provide valuable insights into your overall health status. While there are some external factors that can impact nightly HR values – making lifestyle changes like regular exercise, healthy diet habits,and appropriate medication management may help promote improved overnight RRs alongside better sleep quality over time according to Dr.Breus who also recommends seeing a healthcare provider if abnormal symptoms or repeatedly elevated/low readings surface.

By taking care of our bodies through conscientious daily habits,cognitive wellness practices, and seeking medical attention when necessary we’re able to live healthier lives today—and for years to come.


Does sleep have an impact on heart rate?

There is evidence that sleep can have an impact on heart rate. One study found that people who slept less than six hours per night had a higher heart rate than those who slept more than six hours per night.

What is the relationship between sleep and heart rate?

There is evidence that sleep can have an impact on heart rate. One study found that people who slept less than six hours per night had a higher heart rate than those who slept more than six hours per night.

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