Manage your sleep well
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Manage your sleep well

Post by on Sunday, July 31, 2022

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Sleep is the basic necessity and forms an important part of the life that soothes and rejuvenates our body after days work. Sleep needs differ from person to person and across different age groups. One person may need eight full hours, while another can function with less sleep, however average duration of sleep is 7-8 hours. If there is any disruption in sleep it can affect our Learning, memory, physical/mental health, mood, and result in obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. Many people suffer from one or other kind of sleep problems.

According to the research around 1 in 3 of us will experience occasional sleep problems at some point in our lives. It is very important to note that if we miss our sleep, it can make us crankier and even exhausted. Our performance can decline which affects our work. It also affects our immune system which can predispose one to infections and chronic illnesses. India is the 2nd most sleep-deprived country on the planet, closely ranking behind Japan. In India, 93% of the populations is sleep-deprived, but only 2% Indian discuss their sleep issues with physicians.

Common Sleep Problems

• Insomnia: Insomnia includes having trouble falling asleep, having trouble getting back to sleep, and waking up too early. 

• Day time sleepiness: Feeling tired some times during the day is normal. But it is not normal for sleepiness to interfere with your routine activities. 

Other frequent problems encountered are: 

• Snoring

• Sleep walking

• Sleep talking etc

Among these problems insomnia is very common and causes are:

• Emotional stress,

• Mental health disorders, such as depression or anxiety,

• Chronic pain,

• Allergies,

• Asthma,

• Heart failure,

• Hyperthyroidism,

• Heartburn,

• Menopause,

• Restless leg syndrome,

• Circadian rhythm disruptions, such as jet lag or working night shifts,

• Sleep apnea,

• Certain medications,

• Caffeine,

• Heavy smoking, and

• Excessive alcohol intake.

Effects of decreased or lack of Sleep

Ø  You might feel slow.

Ø  You might feel foggy.

Ø  You might feel depressed.

Ø  You might feel irritable.

Ø  It impairs your higher levels of reasoning.

Ø  It impairs your higher problem-solving capacity.

Ø  It impairs your higher attention.

Ø  It impairs your concentration.

Ø  It affects your immunity.

Ø  It affects your appetite,

Ø  It affects your blood pressure.

Ø  It increases the risk of obesity.

Ø  It increases the risk of heart diseases.

Ø  It can produce diabetic-like conditions in otherwise healthy people.

How to recognize that you don’t have healthy sleep?

Ø  When you wake up earlier than your usual timings.

Ø  When you don’t feel refreshed in the morning.

Ø  When you start feel lack of energy during the day

Ø  When you are in a low mood.

Ø  When you have trouble getting up in the morning.

Ø  When you are struggling to focus.

Ø  When you feel irritable.

Ø  When you feel sleepy during the day.

Ø  When you sleep much longer or later on unstructured days.

How to manage sleep problems

• There should be a fixed timing for going to sleep and waking up  and this routine should be the same on weekdays and weekends as well.

• Before going to sleep, it is advisable to avoid stimulating activities such as phone calls, arguments, emotional discussions, work-related activities, having tea or coffee etc

• Limit your naps to a maximum of 45 minutes and that too atleast 4 to 5 hours prior to your bedtime.

• It is advisable to avoid energizing activities like discussion on phone, watching disturbing content on Tv, surfing net, playing video games, etc before going to sleep.

• Do not lie in bed tossing and turning, rather restrict the time spend in bed for quality sleep.

• Engage in some form of physical activity every day. 

• Spend some time in sun daily.

• You should avoid caffeine after noon.

• Avoid smoking.

• Avoid Alcohol.

• Try eating a light carbohydrate snack before bedtime.

• Avoid foods that are high in sugar as they can cause a burst of energy.

• Avoid spicy foods that are likely to cause heartburn.

• Avoid eating late dinners.

• Keep your bedroom with optimal temperature. The optimal temperature for sleep is between 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit (or 16 to 19 degrees Celsius).

• Keep the bedroom completely dark and quiet. 

• Relaxation techniques.

In case the above steps don’t help you in having a sound sleep, consult a doctor, you may need investigations and treatment.

Good sleep is an extremely important component of staying healthy and the tips given above can be used by one and all to attain the same. Though what may work for one, may not work for the other, but we need to find a proper solution to ease this  problem of sleep deprivation. Anyone and everyone can enjoy that well deserved good night sleep, with continuous effort and a disciplined routine.