Many people, especially as they age, don’t anymore pay much attention to their sleep hygiene. Healthy sleep hygiene means having both bedroom conditions and daily routines in order to promote consistent and continuous sleep. Maintaining a fixed sleep schedule, making your bedroom comfortable and free of disturbances, following a relaxing pre-bed routine, and establishing healthy habits during the day can all contribute to excellent sleep hygiene.
People tend to overlook something as important as sleep if they are not fully aware of its benefits to your health or it’s harmful effects if not properly maintained. Most especially adults, as they think that 8-10 hours of sleep is only for children.
Getting good, adequate sleep isn’t only about the total hours of sleep. It’s also essential to get quality sleep on a regular schedule, so you feel well-rested when you wake up in the morning.
If you frequently have difficulty sleeping or still feel tired after sleeping – talk to your doctor.
Having a sleep schedule and being consistent with it has many health benefits for you. Stated below are as follows:
- Easier to sleep
When you were a child, your body probably had its own sleeping schedule for you to stick to every night. Then as you got older and got busier with real life, you soon forgot what your natural body clock was. This would result in you having trouble sleeping at night.
When you have a sleeping schedule maintained, it will be easier for you to fall asleep since your body will remember when it’s time for bed.
To eliminate common minor sleep problems, make sure you have a comfortable sleep environment, a healthful balance of nutrition and exercise, and frequently engage in relaxing activities before bedtime.
- Creates a healthy sleep-wake pattern
A sleep schedule is the act of sleeping and waking up at the same time – otherwise known as a sleep-wake pattern. Once your body is consistently following the sleep schedule that you maintained for it, it will naturally become your sleep-wake pattern. Even if it's your day off or it's the weekend, your body will remember what time you should go to bed and what time shall you wake up. This way, you won't have any problems getting a good night's sleep at all.
- Better stress levels and mood booster
When you have a sleep schedule, you won't have any trouble getting enough sleep at night. By the time you wake up, you will feel recharged and well-rested in the morning, thus setting you in a good mood. Good sleep is also one of the stress management techniques you must follow. Ensure that when you're stressed at work, don't bring it with you in your bedroom. Instead, do some relaxing activities such as yoga, reading a book, or taking a hot shower, so that stress won't disrupt your sleeping schedule.
- Lessen the risks of heart diseases, stroke, and cancer
Did you know that your sleep quality and duration have a significant effect on many health risk factors? Studies have shown that people who don't get enough sleep are at a greater risk of heart diseases, stroke, and an even higher risk of cancer. Some of the systems that may be affected by sleep in ways that result in cancer risk include the brain, the production and regulation of hormones, the immune system, metabolism, and body weight.
Sleep may affect how cells function, adjusting their environment, or the signals that affect how they grow. Thus, it's best if you take your sleep schedule seriously to prevent fatal illnesses. If you think you've been depriving your sleep hygiene and overall health and experiencing symptoms of a disease, it's best to go through MRI scanning to have a general body scan and detect any diseases at an early stage.
- Avoid sleep disorders
Following a consistent sleep schedule can help you avoid sleep disorders such as insomnia, hypersomnia, sleep apnea, parasomnia, and others. Like how you strive to maintain a healthy balanced diet to stay physically fit and healthy, the same goes for your sleep schedule. When you have a healthy sleep schedule, you won’t suffer from these disorders and may put yourself in the best position to sleep peacefully at night.
- Avoid the risks of obesity
It has been proven that people who have a short sleep duration tend to gain weight faster than those who get adequate sleep every night. Hence, it would result in obesity. If you're trying to lose weight, you must get quality sleep and stick to your sleep schedule.
Aside from that, it's also known that people who get inadequate sleep tend to consume more calories. This increase in calorie-intake may be due to increased appetite and unhealthy food choices. However, it may also only be from an increased time spent awake and the availability to eat. This is particularly true when the time awake is spent being inactive, like watching television and consuming snacks after dinner.
- Maximize brain functions
Sleep is also vital for several aspects of your brain function. This includes your concentration, productivity, memory, cognition, and performance. Frequently depriving yourself of sleep will negatively affect all of the mentioned functions.
Research also discovered that short sleep could negatively impact brain function aspects to the same degree as alcohol intoxication. Moreover, a healthy sleep schedule can improve your memory and optimize problem-solving skills. Whereas getting insufficient sleep can only impair your brain functions.
- Improve overall health quality
Being consistent with your sleep schedule is not just about getting enough sleep every night. It’s about enhancing your overall health quality. Your healthy sleep schedule can improve your immune system and even improve your physical performance during the day.
Your sleep will serve as your body’s time to fix your body cells and prepare your body for the next day’s activity. Thus, it’s vital to give your body a chance to keep up with you and refresh your overall health quality. Simply, sleep helps keep your mind and body healthy.
Kick-start your life
Conclusively, a sleep schedule is extremely beneficial for people of all ages. It is one of the pillars of health along with exercise and nutritious food intake. Your shifts at work and other activities may disrupt your sleep schedule. Yet, it takes determination and dedication to really stick to your sleep schedule in order to get that good sleep hygiene and get back on track.
At Alaska Sleep Clinic, educating people about the importance of sleep is for their lives mentally, physically and spiritually is important. Learn more about sleep hygiene by downloading the FREE e-book. Just click the link below.