Since I developed sleep problems. I have searched for solutions. So what can I do to fix my problem?
If you have a similar situation, please read this:
1. Consequences of Insufficient Sleep
Lack of sleep impacts our health, safety, and longevity. Sleep insufficiency is linked to motor vehicle crashes, industrial disasters, and medical and other occupational errors. Also it’s more likely to suffer from chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, depression, and obesity, as well as from cancer, increased mortality, and reduced quality of life and productivity. Please remind yourself on a daily basis: lack of sleep is very bad for your health.
2. How Much Sleep Do We Need?
I have found a CDC study, which says more than one-third of adults have reported an average of ≤7 hours of sleep per day. But how much sleep do we really need every day? The National Institutes of Health suggests that school-age children need at least 10 hours of sleep daily, teens need 9-10 hours, and adults need 7-8 hours. Are you getting enough sleep?
3. Sleep Hygiene Tips
How can we get a better sleep? Good sleep habits are very helpful. Following tips can improve your regular sleep hygiene.
- Try to go to sleep and get up at the same time every day.
- If you have trouble sleeping, avoid naps, especially in the afternoon.
- Exercise daily. Or try to finish moderate to vigorous workouts at least 3 hours before your bedtime
- Get comfortable. Keep the noise down. Make sure your mattress and pillow are comfortable and supportive.
- Avoid alcohol, cigarettes, and heavy meals in the evening.
- Wind down. Spend the last hour before bed doing a calming activity such as reading. Avoid bright screens within 1-2 hours of your bedtime.
4. Repaying Your Sleep Debt
There is a term called "sleep debt' which is the difference between the amount of sleep you should be getting and the amount you actually get.
Though sometimes we get some tips to cope with not enough sleep, such as eating well, staying hydrated, getting exercise, grabbing a quick nap. But we cannot fight biology. "The only cure for sleep deprivation is sleep."
In The Harvard Medical School Guide to a Good Night’s Sleep, Dr. Epstein advises us to avoid regarding sleep as an indulgence or luxury. Rather, we should recognize that adequate sleep is just as important for health as diet and exercise are. (From my personal experience, sleep is even more important than diet and exercise.) To that end, Dr. Epstein offers the following advice:
- Settle short-term debt. If you missed 10 hours of sleep over the course of a week, add three to four extra sleep hours on the weekend and an extra hour or two per night the following week until you have repaid the debt fully.
- Address a long-term debt. Plan a vacation with a light schedule and few obligations. Then, turn off the alarm clock and just sleep every night until you awake naturally.
- Avoid backsliding into a new debt cycle. Once you’ve determined how much sleep you really need, factor it into your daily schedule. Try to go to bed and get up at the same time every day — at the very least, on weekdays.
So, are you going to get good sleep tonight? I will do. After I publish this post, I will go to bed before 12:00 a.m., at least today:). Take good care of your health, dear readers, night!