Sleep Smart

Man sleeping

Sleep is much more than an activity that occurs when tired. Sleep requires an adequate amount along with a regular, healthy sleeping routine. The consequences of lack of sleep can be very detrimental to your health. But the benefits are just as rewarding as maintaining a healthy eating and exercise lifestyle. Knowing the ins and outs of sleep and how to improve your own sleeping habits will create a happier, healthier lifestyle.

Sleep is a very personal habit.  Everyone needs a different number of hours of sleep each night and everyone will have a different sleeping routine. Most adults will need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night. The important part is that you achieve your specific amount of sleep and develop a sleeping pattern. Without these key factors, several health risks will surface.

 Consequences:

  • Not only will lack of sleep create the yawns, but also cause you to lose focus and productivity. Loss of focus at work can cause inefficiencies. Motor accidents are on the rise in young adults due to tiredness. Impaired judgment and loss of attention puts yourself and others in danger on the road.
  • Sleep deprivation can create serious health issues or have a person be more subject to disease and illnesses.  Stroke, heart attack, diabetes, and blood pressure are just to name a few.
  • When you snooze, you lose. According to WebMd, people who sleep less than six hours a night are 30% more likely to become obese. Lack of sleep leads to increase in hunger and appetite for fatty, high calorie foods.
  • Lack of sleep can slow down many cogitative traits that can hinder a person’s ability to learn. Attention, alertness, concentration, and problem solving are all slowed down in the brain. Your memory also becomes forgetful, making retaining and recalling information quite difficult.
  • Overall, lack of sleep can trigger an early death compared to those adults who obtain adequate sleep. Even increasing sleep from five to seven hours can push away illness and disease that are correlated to sleep deprivation and early death.  

Suggestions:

  • Maintain a regular sleep-wake schedule. Even on the weekends, waking and falling asleep around the same time will help develop an internal clock in your body making it easier to fall and awake at the proper times.
  • Develop a regular sleeping routine. Whether it is reading a book or taking a bath, performing the same activities before bed time will help falling asleep occur faster.
  • Turn off electronics. Creating the bedroom that is free from televisions, laptops, and cell phones will help eliminate the restless mind.
  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine before bed. Even though a small amount of alcohol will help a person fall asleep faster, it will not provide constant sleep for the whole night.
  • Exercise regularly. Exercising during the day can help tire the body out and crave sleep. However, exercising too close to bedtime can create a restless mind.
  • Pick the right foods. If needing a snack before bedtime, your choice in food may greatly impact your ability to sleep.  

Sleeping smart is very important to your health. After sleeping adequate hours on a regular routine, increased energy will arise with decreased stress levels creating a happier, healthy lifestyle. For more facts, information, and advice, check out WebMd.