Why sleep feels so good to us

One day I woke up and asked myself why it was so hard to go out of bed and I feel so good after a night’s rest. To explore this question I went through an educational adventure of reading papers from the ’90s to this time period.

The reason sleeps feels so good to us is due to a hormone called melatonin and that our physiological need for sleep is ¨fulfilled. Melatonin calms us down and still remains in our bodies after we wake up. After being awake for a long time our body desires sleep. When we finally get some sleep it, therefore, feels very good.

Table of contents:

  1. Your body produces melatonin while sleeping
  2. Contentment feels good
  3. Conclusion

Your body produces melatonin while sleeping

While we sleep our body produces and releases a naturally occurring hormone called melatonin. Night-time levels of melatonin are usually 10 times higher than in the daytime.

Source: yourhormones.info

Melatonin affects you by making you feel relaxed so you can fall asleep easier. Naturally, the hormone is released at night time to support your natural circadian rhythm, so you can fall asleep more easily.

Source: healthline.com

When we wake up our body still has some melatonin even though we stop producing the hormone when waking up. 

When we wake up our body still has some melatonin, which is one of the reasons that we still feel very calm and relaxed when waking up. Usually, the hormone still lingers in our body for up to an hour.

Contentment feels good

Whenever your body craves something for a longer or even a short period you get a great feeling of contentment whenever you fulfill such a craving.

If you are like most people you have probably felt hunger, thirst, or similar cravings in your life.

After a night out drinking our bodies are usually very dehydrated causing your body to crave water. When you finally get that one sip of tap water your body feels so refreshed that you would not question it if someone said it was pure water made from the cleanest glaciers.

The same goes for other bodily cravings such as food, warmth and you guessed it. Sleep. Sleep is also something that our body craves, so whenever your body finally gets some after being very sleep-deprived, it feels so good.

Imagine having to do an all-nighter before having to force yourself to stay awake throughout a whole day. That sleep would be so amazing that it would be incomparable to any other kind of rest.

Even though it usually is not as extreme, it still applies. So after you wake up you will feel good since you have fulfilled your bodily craving for sleep.

These needs are categories as physiological or immediate needs and can be explained through Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs theory. 

Source: canadacollege.edu


So in conclusion sleeps feels so good to us because melatonin is being produced and released heavily while we sleep. This hormone relaxes our body causing us to feel good. Besides that, we please our body by fulfilling its need for rest and sleep. 

Therefore our body awards us with a good feeling, which can be compared to the feeling of getting food or water after not eating or drinking for a longer period of time.

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