Sunday, May 15, 2011

A good night's sleep is key to good health.

  • For some lucky people, sleep comes as soon as their head hits the pillow. For most of us, it's much harder. According to National Sleep Foundation polls, more and more Americans are getting less than eight hours of sleep per night every year. Chronic sleep deprivation has effects from mild to disastrous.
  1. Several studies indicate that sleeping less than 8 hours a night leads to obesity.
  2. Harvard study found that the less people sleep, the more likely they are to suffer from a major illness.
  3. People who sleep less than 5 hours a night are 60 percent more likely to get high blood pressure, a Columbia study found. According to a British study, they are alsotwice as likely to get heart disease.
  4. People who sleep less than 6 hours a night increase by 50% their chance of getting a virus.
  5. A Princeton study found lack of sleep leads the body to slow down production of brain cells.
Prepare your bedroom for sleep
To get a good night's sleep, you need the proper environment. Noises, light, and even temperature can ruin your shot at a full forty winks.Use your bedroom only for sleep and sex. Otherwise,  your brain will associate bed with too many wakeful activities, preventing you from sleeping.
  1. Turn your clock so you can't see the time. If you keep checking the time, it will make sleep more difficult.
  2. Dr. William Dement recommends you keep light dim. Bright light will suppressmelatonin, the hormone that promotes sleep.

  1. Intrusive sound will keep you awake.
  1. Your room should be cool, not warm.
    • Your body temperature reaches its lowest point right about the time you go to sleep; an environment that prevents your body temperature from dropping will keep you awake.
    • The temperature should be between 54 and 75 degrees, says the National Sleep Foundation.Your bed must be comfortable. An uncomfortable bed or pillow is a recipe for a night with little sleep.
Prepare your body for sleep
Get at least 15 minutes of sunlight when you wake up.

    1. Use a small reading light so as not to lower your melatonin levels! Read a boring book if you can't sleep !

    1. If you still can't sleep, talk to your doctor about taking sleep medications. Do not take them before speaking to your doctor, as you may have other issues that would make sleep medications a bad idea!

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