Are we sleeping enough for optimal health? The answer to this question is a resounding no. Unfortunately, too many of us prioritize work, family, school, and other responsibilities over sleep in the name of greater productivity. Additionally, many of are also stressed out, too connected to our mobile devices, and engage in poor lifestyle choices that affect our ability to sleep. In fact, 50-70 million US adults have sleep or wakefulness disorder. One CDC Study determined that, among 74,571 adult respondents in 12 states, 35.3% reported less than seven hours of sleep during a typical 24-hour period, 48.0% reported snoring, Even more scary, 37.9% reported unintentionally falling asleep during the day at least once in the preceding month, and 4.7% reported nodding off or falling asleep while driving at least once in the preceding month.
Nodding off is not the only danger that you can face by not getting the eight hours of sleep you need for optimal health. A lack of sleep can cause restlessness, mood changes, difficulty concentrating on things, impaired reaction time, and poor memory. It also increases the likelihood of mortality of all kinds. You’re more likely to have high blood pressure, cardiac issues, metabolic syndrome, a variety of cancers, and diabetes. Individuals who want to minimize their chances of dealing with these consequences of short sleep can start with changing how they prepare for sleep.
How Can We Get Better Sleep by Changing our Routine?
- Practice good sleep behavior. We are connected to our telephones, watch television, and work too late into the night. The blue light emitted from electronic devices throws your circadian rhythm off, making a sleep disorder more likely. Therefore, turn off electronics an hour before bedtime and don’t watch television in bed. Additionally, be sure to get up and go to bed at the same time, so your body knows when it is time to sleep. In regard to your bedroom, create the right sleep environment. A cool dark room is optimal for sleep.
- Exercise more. This not only helps to tire your body and mind for a better night’s sleep; it can also improve how you react to stress, making it easier to sleep at night. Meditation may also reduce your stress levels and improve how quickly you’re able to fall and stay asleep.
- Avoid spicy foods or a heavy meal right before bed. Eating these foods late at night can increase the risk of getting heartburn and may provide unwanted energy that will only keep you up longer. Obviously, it’s also a good idea to avoid caffeine before bed. Opt instead for herbal teas that can calm your nerves and help you fall asleep.
The Hope4Cancer®Institute incorporates a whole body treatment customized program that treats the underlying condition and not just the symptoms. Combining alternative cancer treatments that have shown successful results with lifestyle modifications, the Hope4Cancer® Institute helps patients heal. Sleep and rest are major factors in how well the body heals. If you find that you are always tired or stressed, take a look at your sleep. It might lead to improved mood, more energy, and better overall health.