Importance of developing good sleeping habit is primary in our quest for good health. This post provides information on sleep, and describes its characteristics. A relevant research study is discussed investigating sleep patterns, sleep problems, and its implication to the social context. Such sleep studies provide thorough information for people who disregard sleep as being important. The importance of developing good sleeping habit cannot be overemphasized. Improving sleep can be easy, and this post talks on ways to improve sleep.
Proper Sleeping Patterns
Sleeping is a regular habit and, in fact, a biological necessity. It is one of those things that people need to do in order to give the body and brain enough time to rest and rejuvenate. The typical sleeping positions would be to lie down with closed, preferably on a comfortable bed. A person who wants to get some sleep usually tries to minimize distractions and any loud noise that might prevent one having the right atmosphere for sleeping. During sleep, a person usually breathes in a slow and rhythmic pattern, with muscles completely relaxed. A few minutes or some hours after falling asleep, one would occasionally roll over or change body positions. This change in sleeping posture occurs around once or twice every hour. This can be the body’s way of making sure that no part of the body or skin has its circulation cut off too long a period of time. Basically, a sleeping person is unconscious of the things that are happening around in the environment. But for some people, they may be getting lack of sleep due to several factors. Stress, fatigue, and worry may be some of the reasons why people do not get enough sleep.
A large European research firm was commissioned to investigate the causes and implications of sleep problems from a medical as well as from a social point of view. Since our environment is changing into a 24/7 society, people are now having less time to sleep. The research focuses on the role of sleep in the quality of life; in mood disorders and how it can affect performance, accident rates, and cardiovascular diseases. One group from the research investigated sleep patterns during a normal week. They found out that following sleep restriction to four hours per night, an individual’s ability to perform complex tasks gradually decreased during the five days.
Another group has shown ways in which the social context of everyday life has influences on sleep quality. Interviews with women in Italy show how women’s sleep is disturbed by care giving roles, especially for elderly relatives. Large scale surveys from the study made the conclusion of strong social inequalities in sleep problems with poorer sleep recorded for people living in disadvantaged social situations, such as low income or low educational attainment. This research study also suggests that disturbed sleep patterns thoroughly interfere with our wellbeing and the interaction with the environment. The study clearly revealed age-related changes in the impairment of constant cautious attention after one night without sleep. This particular finding is consistent with epidemiological studies and has important implications for the prevention of accidents associated with loss of sleep or sleep problems. The importance of developing good sleeping habit is paramount in our lifestyle.
Sleep studies such as this can open up new thoughts with regards to sleeping. Not all people pay great attention to sleep, much less sleep normally. Our society is changing, and sleep patterns change as well. A good night’s sleep is essentially important for people who are active during the day, because sleep can recharge the body and give it some resting time. Most people need around seven to nine hours of sleep a night. This would be average, but can be subjective depending on the person himself. Improving sleep can be easy. By exercising regularly, it helps tire and relax one’s body. Avoid caffeine after 4 p.m. and avoid stimulants like cigarettes, as well. Consuming alcohol disrupts the brain’s normal patterns during sleep. By having a regular sleep pattern even on weekends, a person can really get a good night’s sleep. The importance of developing good sleeping habit is a worthwhile venture.
Do you suddenly wake up in the middle of every night choking and gasping for air? It is not always due to a nightmare every night. It is important that you take a closer look into the behaviour as you might be suffering from a sleep disorder known as Sleep Apnea.
Does your snoring in the night often make your partner wake up? Do you experience frequent headaches and dry mouth in the mornings? Once you experience these symptoms, note that it is time to see a doctor, because you may be suffering from a Sleeping Disorder.
Sleep Apnea is a type of sleeping disorder. The word “apnea” is a Greek word, its meaning, “want of breath”. Sleep Apnea is a disorder that causes disruption of breathing during sleep. Your breathing either becomes slow or stops completely during sleep. The frequency of disruption can range up to 20 times in an hour. The duration of disruption can last up to 20 seconds, bringing you close to death. There is need to aware of the importance of developing good sleeping habit.
Sleep Apnea devastates your sleeping routine. It also affects your body. There are three categories of sleep Apnea. All three are equally lethal.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Obstructive Sleep Apnea is a widely predominant type of sleep Apnea. It’s caused when your airway gets obstructed due to relaxation of the muscles of the soft palate around the base of tongue. When the airway gets obstructed, it lowers the level of oxygen in the blood and leads to a condition known as hypoxia. It also elevates the blood pressure and increases stress on your heart. These conditions prevent the patient from entering into sound sleep. This makes a person suffer from lack of quality sleep. A person suffering from Obstructive Sleep Apnea snores in the night and wakes up choking several times and tries desperately to sleep again.
Central Sleep Apnea
Central Sleep Apnea is not common. It is characterised by brain signal flaw. The brain’s signals instructing the body to breathe get flawed. As a result of this delayed signal to breathe, throat breathing, abdominal breathing and oral breathing cease simultaneously. Though the duration of interruption lasts a few seconds, it lowers the oxygen supply to blood and tissues significantly. High blood pressure, irregular heart beat and even heart stroke are some of the experiences for a person suffering from central sleep apnea.
Mixed Sleep Apnea
The combination of symptoms of the two Sleep Apnea conditions: Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Central Sleep Apnea results in a condition referred to as Mixed Sleep Apnea.
Let’s take a closer look on Obstructive Sleep Apnea since it is highly prevalent and common in people suffering from Sleep Apnea disorder.
There can be several causes that lead to the obstruction of your airway passage during sleep, leading to Obstructive Sleep Apnea. One of the major reasons is that your throat muscles and tongue relax and shrink excessively than normal.
For the overweight person, the soft tissue in your throat can become inflexible and enlarged and causes blockade in the airway passage. Other reasons could be as a result of increased size of your adenoids and tonsils, which further contribute in the disruption of flow of air.
The common symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea are choking and gasping for air several times in the night. Snoring loudly is also among a number of symptoms of Obstructive Sleep Apnea. If you suffer from Obstructive Sleep Apnea, you would experience sleepiness during the daytime as well. You would not be able to concentrate and would suffer from dry throat and headache in the mornings. Among other symptoms are rapid weight gain, lethargy, high blood pressure, and lack of concentration and even depression.
There are many treatments available for Obstructive Sleep Apnea. The common ones are losing weight, avoiding alcohol consumption during the evening and sleeping on your side. Medical treatments include Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) and Oxygen Administration. Surgeries are also performed and tracheostomy is a surgery used in treatment of severe Sleep Apnea conditions.
Visit your doctor immediately for formal diagnosis If you feel you are displaying symptoms of Sleep Apnea.
Working Towards Good Sleeping Habit
Little activities can make a big difference when a person has sleeping problems. Availability of comfortable pillows and mattresses can help in making sleeping more comfortable and inviting. Making the bedroom a relaxation haven can also enhance sleep. Being relaxed and calm, without worrying too much about the next days’ schedule, can make a difference in achieving quality sleep. Developing good sleeping habit should be a priority.
Quite a few seek medical advice and remain unaware of the behavioural and medical options available to treat insomnia. Most people would easily resort to prescription and over-the-counter sleeping pills. However, better sleep doesn’t have to come in a pill and several studies have been reported to support this view. Good sleeping habit is worthwhile health culture to develop.
The Journal of Family Practice report reveals that simple behavioural and psychological treatments work just as well, and sometimes better, than popular medications. Last year, the medical journal Sleep reported on 5 high-quality trials that showed cognitive behavioural therapy helped people suffering from insomnia fall asleep sooner and stay asleep longer.
American Journal of Psychiatry analysis of 21 studies showed that behavioural treatment helped people fall asleep nearly nine minutes sooner than sleep drugs.
Generally, sleep therapy worked just as well as drugs, but without any side effects. Most people don’t believe that these behavioural strategies for better sleep can really make a difference because they appear to be so simple to produce results. Good sleeping habit can really make a difference.
Stimulus control is one of the most effective methods of cognitive behavioural therapy. It disallows a person from watching television, eating or reading in bed. Going to bed should be done only when you are sleepy. It encourages you to get up at the same time every day, and not to take catnaps during the day. If sleep remains elusive after 15 minutes, leave the bed and engage in something relaxing, but avoid exciting or stimulating activity and thoughts. Good sleeping habit is key to health.
Additional sleep therapy includes sleep hygiene which involves regular exercise, light-proofing your bedroom to keep it dark, and making the bed and room temperatures comfortable. People suffering from chronic insomnia should eat regular meals and must not go to bed hungry. Limit intake of beverages, particularly alcohol and caffeinated drinks, around bedtime. Avoid looking at the clock and do not try too hard to fall asleep. Turn the clock around so you don’t get to see it. Watching time pass is one of the worst things to do when you’re trying to fall asleep. Developing good sleeping habit will have positive impact on our lifestyles.
These steps may appear to be simple; however, they really make a significant difference for people with insomnia. According to a report of Family Practice, these interventions are based on the notion that thoughts and behaviours can seriously arouse the central nervous system and deregulate sleep cycles, resulting in chronic insomnia.
If the enumerated steps fail to yield result, consult your doctor about a referral to a sleep therapist, who can give you additional relaxation techniques to help bring on sleep. A sleep therapist can help you to develop good sleeping habit as well as may help you reset your sleep-wake plan which involves regulating your bedtime each night over the course of a few weeks.
Good sleeping habit should go hand in hand with good and quality sleeping environment, bedding and other sleeping apparels.
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