Young adults and children seem to have no problem sleeping. Why is sleep so challenging to get as we age? It seems unfair that adults 65 and older have to struggle to get the recommended 8 hours of sleep.
It is hard to overstate the importance of sleep. Every part of our bodies is affected by sleep, and not enough can lead to a decline in health.
Sleep, brain function – Connection Between Sleep And Health
Insufficient sleep can affect our ability to think clearly and concentrate. It can also have an impact on memory. People who sleep well are more sharp and controllable than those who don’t.
The health of your heart and sleep – Connection Between Sleep And Health
Lack of sleep has been linked to high blood pressure and heart disease. It may also increase your chances of suffering from a stroke.
Sleep and skin – Connection Between Sleep And Health
Lack of sleep can lead to the body producing more cortisol. This hormone is related to stress and breaks down collagen. Sleep deprivation can lead to skin loss of elasticity, tone, and dark circles under your eyes.
Weight and sleep – Connection Between Sleep And Health
Weight gain is directly linked to sleep deprivation. Adults who do not get the recommended amount of sleep per night are 55% more likely to become obese. In addition, if we don’t get enough sleep, we tend to eat less, which can also lead to weight gain.
Sleep and blood sugar – Connection Between Sleep And Health
Sleep deprivation has been shown to increase insulin sensitivity and hurt blood sugar. Numerous studies have demonstrated a link between poor sleep and prediabetes.
Mental and sleep health – Connection Between Sleep And Health
The amount of sleep we get each day can have an impact on our mood and mental health. Inadequate sleep can lead to depression, which can cause us to be cranky, irritable, and less capable of coping with everyday stresses.
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Four Steps to Better Sleep – Connection Between Sleep And Health
Although the recipe for a good night of sleep is easy, it takes some time and lifestyle changes to get there.
1. It is essential to know how much sleep you are getting each night before going to a sleep clinic. A fitness tracker is the best way to measure your sleep quality. If you wear your tracker to bed, most trackers will have a feature that measures the quality and quantity of your sleep. Some models include a function that reminds you when it is time to go to bed. It is essential to know how much sleep you get each night. This will help you get more rest.
2. Make a sleep schedule. Make a schedule for your week and day. Schedule time for sleep. You should aim to get to bed at the same time every night. Even if your evenings are unpredictable, try to wake up the following day at the same time every day. It will be easier to follow a schedule for sleeping.
3. Sleep stealing drugs should be avoided. Sleep disruptors include alcohol, tobacco, sugar, chocolate, and even alcohol. You can sleep better if you avoid caffeine, tea, sugary foods, and heavy meals in the evening and morning. Blue light-emitting devices such as TVs, smartphones, tablets, and computers emit blue lights are known to be physical sleep stealers. Experts recommend turning off all screens at least one hour before going to bed.
4. Make your sleeping space comfortable and welcoming. Cooler temperatures are better for many people. Find out what works best for you. Make sure you choose a pillow that suits your sleeping style, whether side, stomach, back or side. Light-blocking curtains will prevent outside light from entering your bedroom and disrupting your sleep.
It takes some planning and practice to get the right amount of rest each night. But the end result is well worth it. You will feel more awake and alert each day, and this will also help with other aspects of your overall health. If you’re unable to get better sleep or have any questions, you can always reach out to your healthcare provider.