How to sleep and get enough sleep? What do you need to consider if you want to wake up refreshed
The problem many people experience: not being able to sleep at night – then wanting to fall asleep during the day and on the go while not being able to function efficiently. How to sleep and to get enough sleep?
Daytime sleepiness, inability to focus and depression – these are typical signs of chronic sleep deprivation. It is a very harmful condition. If it continues for a long time, it significantly increases the risk of many diseases and can cause premature aging. Other reasons for this condition can be insomnia, and the so-called obstructive sleep apnea, usually associated with snoring. But apart from these health problems, many people do not get enough sleep simply because they can’t properly organize their lives – work, family life, free time. These are the things that we must deal with in the first place.
How to sleep better?
– Take a walk before going to bed. If you can’t take a half an hour walk, spend time outdoors for at least 10 minutes a day.
– Do not sleep in the afternoon, even if you really want to – it can interrupt sleep schedule. If you get sleepy do not sit down in a comfortable chair and do not lie down. Try to distract yourself to endure the urge to sleep. After 15-30 minutes, a strong craving to sleep usually will go away.
– Sleep with half-open window – modern windows allow you to do it without causing drafts.
– Refrain from eating for at least 2-3 hours before bed. Dinner should not be abundant although refreshing beverages should be reserved for the next day or the morning. If you get really hungry try eating a cup of yogurt or a peace of fruit.
– Do not fall asleep lying on your back, while reading or watching TV. Try to get used to falling asleep with your hands folded under your cheek and turned to the right side.
– Fall asleep in total darkness without any light sources. Even the most insignificant one can disturb sleep and keep you awake.
– Mattress and bedding should be comfort
able, saving on things like that is not the best choice.
– Air in the bedroom should not be dry. While sleeping, your body produces less saliva secretion, moisturizing the mouth and respiratory tract. That is the way our body hydrates – remember, you often wake up with a dry mouth and at the same time you often feel thirsty. If necessary, place a humidifier.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) – a condition in which there are episodes of complete or partial overlapping of the respiratory tract: its walls close down for a short time and do not pass air. This happens due to the fact that the pharyngeal muscles are relaxed while sleep and do not hinder spasenie airways. There is a sort of stop of breathing that usually lasts more than 10 seconds. Usually, a person wakes up after that, but not always. People with obstructive sleep apnea experience more than 5 such episodes an hour. This condition occurs in 10-12% of people. The disease is usually associated with snoring. Most often occurs in people who are overweight and have a larger neck size (women over 40 cm in men – more than 43 cm). OSA significantly increases the risk of developing hypertension, heart rhythm disorders, heart attack, stroke and even sudden death during sleep. Do not underestimate the danger – it is a condition that requires treatment by a specialist, including the use of special devices that prevent respiratory tract contractions while increasing the pressure in the tract.
How to make your sleep more efficient?
1. Sleep on your side
A perfect dream happens on the side. The situation of sleeping on the back can be harmful, it contributes to snoring. A position on the side of the brain is best for clearance of toxins – it is better for lymph movement, carrying away toxic substances out of the brain. This new discovery: the lymphatic system of the brain itself opened only 3 years ago, before its existence this fact was not suspected. It works best while you sleep, and now it turned out that its activity depends on the position of the body in bed. As of dreaming it is difficult to control the situation, not everyone succeeds most of the time in a dream to carry themselves out on the side. Try this trick: a nightgown or pajamas to sew a pocket between the shoulder blades with the clasp and put a tennis ball in the pocket.
2. Eat more at work
Eliminate late dinners if possible – a working day ends at 7 pm , so it is understandable that people come home late, prepare the meal, eat it and go to sleep. In such cases it is better to eat at work or on the way home from work. And at night – drink a cup of milk but say no to cookies.
3. Say goodbye to incandescents
Avoid even short exposure to light at night. When sleeping, be sure to turn off all the lights in the bedroom (even the lamp!), TV, computer, and so on.
4. Create darkness
Try to lengthen the night to 9-10 hours. Use lamp shades in the bedroom, cover the windows with thick curtains so that no light comes in from the street.
5. Avoid weight training in the morning
Stretching exercises help waking up the best. Doing cardio and strength exercises should be in the afternoon – ideally around 3-4 pm.
6. Turn off the computer and TV an hour before sleep
Working with electronic devices inhibits the production of melatonin.
7. Get up with the sun, even if you went to bed late
Within 1-2 days of this regime going to bed early is no longer a problem.
8. Give yourself a foot massage or buy a massager
Soles of the feet have many active points for the tone of their useful boost.
9. Live in the rhythm of nature
Unfortunately, in modern conditions the biorhythms of your body do not coincide with the natural rhythms that are dictated by the sunrise and sunset. About an hour before dawn lasting biochemical changes take place in the human body that are needed to provide energy in the early afternoon. For this reason and the release of hormones, some of which increase the pressure and causes the heart to contract more quickly (because of this heart attacks and strokes are more common in the morning). If we got up and went out into the street as people did for centuries, the negative effect of changes would weaken. The energy of glucose and hormones directed to a peaceful course: sugar assimilated to the muscles, and doesn’t turn into fat, as happens during sleep and hormones help the body to be included in the work process. In addition, the solar spectrum at sunrise gives optimism.
10. Do not eat breakfast immediately after waking up
Give your body time to recover. Ideal time for breakfast is after a short walk (walk the dog in the park or your kid to kindergarten).
11. Choose red
If you get up at night, provide lighting in the restroom and the bathroom by a dim red light that suppresses melatonin less than white or blue light.
Why do you need to sleep in total darkness?
There are studies showing that you have to sleep in total darkness. Night work and light at night churns rhythms of the body and contributes to the development of certain cancers. Vladimir Anisimov, corresponding member of Russian Academy of Sciences, Doctor of Medical Sciences, Head of Carcinogenesis and Oncology Institute Petrov in St. Petersburg states:
– The studies have shown that when women often turn on the lights in the bedroom at night, it increases risk of breast cancer. And the longer the light is used, the greater the likelihood of developing this disease becomes. Shift work has the same negative effect. We worked at night for more than 30 years, this type of cancer is often a factor of. But shift work affects men too, if they work at least 3 nights a month they more often develop prostate cancer. Plus, night light increases the risk of cancers of the colon and rectum. And more significantly increase the risk of obesity, metabolic syndrome, coronary heart disease, peptic ulcer disease. All this is linked with the violation of diurnal (circadian) rhythms. Since night light suppresses the production of melatonin, which has many beneficial effects, including the protection against cancer. In the darkness, melatonin is produced more. Therefore, we must try as much as possible to comply with the natural mode of day and night.