How many people really sleep well?
Between our busy schedules, our various commitments, and our hyper-digital world, it can seem nearly impossible to get truly good rest. Most of us lament how short each day is - we wake up exhausted, drag through the day (fueled by our favorite stimulant: caffeine!), crash in the evening, and then try to cram in some work before falling into bed (most likely browsing on the smartphone before sleeping). Lather, rinse, repeat.
This vicious cycle can take a serious toll on your health!
Make the time today to prioritize your sleep. If you don't allow your body to truly detoxify and rejuvenate, you are just wearing yourself out, and everything takes that much more effort/time/hassle. Your time will be much better spent when you are well-rested. (And for those generous moms out there - it is not a crime to put your need for rest first, so that you can really help and serve your family tomorrow. You're awesome!)
The article below details some tips for sleeping well. We hope that it benefits you and motivates you to invest in your long-term health by budgeting your time so you get real restorative sleep.
If you have questions, or are interested in looking deeper into the cause of your fatigue or insomnia, call us at 850-878-5636 to set up a complimentary consultation with Dr. Moleski.
Sleepless in Tallahassee?
Good rest is essential to good health. My patients often bring me concerns about their ability to sleep restfully, so I thought I’d share some ideas to help you get a good night’s sleep. Many of them report either insomnia or fitful sleep. If insomnia has been happening for some time, it can elevate cortisol (stress hormone) levels the following day, which can lead to more insomnia. Lack of good quality sleep can result in increased systemic inflammation which can lead to a whole host of other health problems.
Sleep has two basic cycles: REM and non-REM. We know REM as ‘Rapid Eye Movement’ which occurs at the top of the sleep cycle. Non-REM is the deepest sleep and allows the body to repair and regenerate through the night. If your sleep is too short or often interrupted, you’re missing out on the rest your body systems need to recover from the stressors of the day. Although individual needs will vary, research has shown that seven hours per night seems to be the sweet spot for regenerative sleep. Children and teenagers need a few additional hours each night. See the Cycles of Sleep image showing our target for a good nights’ sleep.
9 Tips for Sound Sleep Without The Use Of Drugs
Manage stress and the stress response with specific adrenal trophorestorative herbs. Herbs can be powerful compounds with possible drug interactions. Be sure to consult with your physician regarding their use.
Ensure stable blood sugar levels before going to bed (i.e. no late-night snacks or sugary treats after dinner). Some people will do well to consume a small amount of protein, fat, and/or veggie just before bed.
Discontinue the use of blue-light devices for 1 hour before bed (including computers, cell phones and even television.) These disrupt the body’s circadian rhythm.
Use low lights to create ‘dusk’ inside the house – especially in the bedroom. Create an even more calming atmosphere with relaxing music. Pandora has a channel called "Sleep Station Radio."
Try lowering the temperature in the bedroom near 68 degrees for optimal sleep.
Encourage regular exercise as a source of stress-relief and to increase the body’s need for sleep. For many people, their days consist of sitting at a computer all day and then going home to “relax.” Adding exercise to your life has a myriad of benefits, but for this purpose, a good workout can even simply help “tire you out” and give you good reason to sleep.
Avoid any kind of caffeine after 2 pm.
Don’t drink alcohol in the evening. Many may see this as a sleep aid, but it has been shown to actually lead to later onset of sleep, and a lower quality of sleep. If you want to get the rest you need, don’t fall into this mistake.
Mattresses should be no older than 8-10 years and be firm enough to support the body, yet allow for a comfortable night’s sleep.