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I’ve searched for this over and over but haven’t found a definite answer to my questions… It would be awesome if the answer(s) could contain links that support their sayings :)

Say you are put to sleep by magic and can’t be woken up by your companions because reasons. You stay asleep for at least 8 hours before waking up and you haven’t been damaged during that time.

My questions are the following :

  • Are you eligible for the long rest benefits?
  • If yes, can you ask for these benefits while you are still sleeping or only once you wake up?
  • (Bonus, I don’t know if this deserves a whole other question) In other words, is magical sleep regenerative enough to make you feel well rested and benefit from a long rest? (Does it make you prone to nightmare, perturbs your mind or whatever so that you don’t actually feel rested)
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    \$\begingroup\$ Related: What is the difference between "Unconscious" and "Asleep"?, see also the discussion of whether one can take a short rest while unconscious at Can a zero-HP, unconscious and stable character be woken up prematurely? \$\endgroup\$
    – Kirt
    Jul 15, 2023 at 21:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ YeezyFactory: Perhaps it is better to explain the reason why someone cannot be woken up and how that one was put to sleep in the first place. As you can see in the answer from @Nobody-the-Hobgoblin it must be a very special situation you're talking about - I suppose, it's not a level 9 spell situation .... Without knowing more details there won't be more answers, I would think. \$\endgroup\$
    – Flynxer
    Jul 17, 2023 at 8:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ I’d say it’s primarily to satisfy curiosity as "how different is magical sleep from normal sleep". But I guess these kind of situations will never happen in casual dnd as being put to sleep for such an extended period of time (have it be by traps, magical items or places, spells…) is close to homebrew. I personally found disappointing that you can only put others to sleep for such low amounts of time as a minute, so I’d agree that my original question doesn’t have much sense in casual dnd. I hope this explanation helped a bit! \$\endgroup\$ Jul 17, 2023 at 11:30

1 Answer 1

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Sleep allows you to rest, the effect of spells depends on the spell

In general, you probably could benefit from a long rest if sleeping for 8 hours, for whatever reason. The definition of a Long Rest (p. 186, PHB) is:

A long rest is a period of extended downtime, at least 8 hours long, during which a character sleeps or performs light activity: reading, talking, eating, or standing watch for no more than 2 hours. (...) A character can’t benefit from more than one long rest in a 24-hour period, and a character must have at least 1 hit point at the start of the rest to gain its benefits.

There is nothing in there that says the sleep must be natural. As long as you have at least 1 hit point, and have not taken a long rest within the last 24 hours, and you sleep you should be able to benefit.

However, there is some explicit rules text supporting a DM who does not want to allow this. The introduction to Resting (p. 186, PHB) says:

Adventurers can take short rests in the midst of an adventuring day and a long rest to end the day.

So, is it the "end of the day" if you get hit by magical sleep in the midst of the day? Up to the DM. Most groups I know allow long rest not only at the end of the day, but at any time, because you cannot benefit from more than one in 24 hours, so there is little chance for abuse. In those cases where you get hit by a very powerful, long term sleep effect, you can probably use all the help you can get.

Note that there are additional rules from Xanathar's Guide to Everything (optional, so up to the DM too), about sleeping in medium or heavy armor (which you have no time to doff, if you get put to sleep magically):

When you finish a long rest during which you slept in medium or heavy armor, you regain only one quarter of your spent Hit Dice (minimum of one die). If you have any levels of exhaustion, the rest doesn't reduce your exhaustion level.

What spell is this about?

There are actually very few spells in the core rules to which this could apply, so the question feels a bit hypothetical. The following spells in the PHB can put a character to sleep:

  • Sleep (obviously). This one last only for 1 minute, so does not apply here.
  • Eyebite (Asleep option). Again, lasts only up to 1 minute, so does not apply.
  • Symbol (Sleep option). This one lasts only for 10 minutes, so does not apply here.
  • Dream does not apply, as it does not put anyone to sleep, it works on someone already sleeping. If you chose the nightmare option, they will not benefit from a long rest, which implies they can get a normal long rest from their sleep under the normal version of dream. As @Kryomaani points out, the fact that this spell has explicit language to state when the target will not benefit from a long rest strongly supports that other spells would need to say so explicitly too, to have that effect.
  • Imprisonment (Slumber option). This is the only one that seems to apply, as its duration is until dispelled. It has no text about preventing long rest benefits.
  • Wish The risky off-label version, as Imprisonment is 9th level and thus cannot be cast with a standard wish. If the DM agrees to grant a wish for long sleep that prevents rest, this could achieve it.

So, outside of some homebrew, you have to get hit with a 9th level spell to have this problem.

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    \$\begingroup\$ The rules text on the Dream spell is a great reminder of the "there are no secret rules" and "spells only do what they say they do" principles. Dream explicitly mentions not being able to benefit from a long rest, so if there was a spell that put you into sleep for more than 8 hours with the intention of you not getting a long rest out of it, it'd almost certainly explicitly mention that. \$\endgroup\$
    – Kryomaani
    Jul 16, 2023 at 13:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ I find the point about dream a very good answer to my question, as it shows that there are no differences to the resting effect between natural and magical sleep unless specified. (Also sorry for accepting only now ^^’) \$\endgroup\$ Jul 23, 2023 at 12:57

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