Having trouble sleeping all night and waking up tired and cranky in the morning? Or are you sleeping for 8 hours and feeling like you’re still not getting enough sleep? Then it's high time you improve sleep hygiene. For the uninitiated, sleep hygiene refers to the actions or habits that one maintains in order to achieve healthy sleep. It can include sleeping on a regular schedule, avoiding electronics before bed, or even the quality of your sleep.
To begin with, let us understand the importance of sleep and sleep hygiene.
There is no doubt that sleep is extremely beneficial for your brain, mood, memory, and many other functions of the body. It releases hormones that assist with appetite control and stress management, shares Priyanka Salot, Co-founder of The Sleep Company.
It restores the immune system as well as helps us store memories from the previous day. Sleep can be affected by a variety of factors, including work, stress, daily schedules, etc. Therefore, sleep is an important part of maintaining your mental health because poor sleep can lead to depression, anxiety, insomnia, obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
What are the factors that impact sleep?
When we sleep, our bodies work to repair and strengthen muscles, which helps lessen the effects of muscle pain and soreness that can come with prolonged periods of exercise. Sleep also helps the body repair tissues and cells that have been damaged during the day from sunlight exposure. This repair process is crucial because it allows the body to function at its peak potential. The high levels of growth hormone released while sleeping are also crucial, as they help with muscle development and repair, keeping us in shape and allowing us to perform well during our workouts.
Another factor that impacts sleep is caffeine consumption. When we consume caffeine before bedtime, we may be disrupting the processes of sleep and wakefulness. Caffeine affects both adenosine receptors in the brain that regulate sleep/wake cycles, as well as adenosine receptors in the adrenal glands that regulate stress. This means that caffeine consumption can make it more difficult to fall asleep and stay asleep, especially for those with adrenal fatigue. It also decreases sleep quality by causing us to wake up frequently throughout the night and experience lower levels of sleep stages.
How does sleep affect Mental health?
In order to stay mentally healthy, every individual needs quality sleep. Lack of sleep can cause you to be irritable, stressed, or have dark circles under your eyes. An individual’s sleep cycle is generally characterised by changes in brain activity that increase and decrease. Additionally, the brain's chemicals at night help people stabilise their moods, motivation, concentration skills, memory, and emotions. Additionally, sleep is linked to psychological states, especially REM sleep, which allows the brain to process emotions. Sleep helps the brain evaluate and recall thoughts and memories, so not getting enough sleep can affect moods and feelings, which can lead to psychological disorders. In short, sleep disorders are increasingly being seen as signs of mental illnesses. Because sleep and mental health are highly interconnected, both can promote sleep problems.
Tips to Improve Your Sleeping Habits
- Establish a regular sleep schedule: Aim to get 7 to 8 hours of sleep per night
- Turn off screens and any other things that may keep you awake before going to sleep
- Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and large meals at night
- Keep your waking schedule consistent during the week and on weekends
- Make your back feel better with a leg pillow
- Choose a mattress that is comfortable and supportive
- Stress management
- Creating a calm sleeping environment
Comfortable, convenient and sound sleep is an important part of human life. It is absolutely necessary for the body and mind to have enough time to rest and rejuvenate. Sleep hygiene is a set of habits that can be adopted by individuals to promote quality sleep and and it can be easily achieved with SmartGRID mattresses. This way of life may require changes in lifestyle but will result in improved quality of life.
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