Having a good night's sleep is just as significant as performing regular exercise and consuming a healthy diet. Research has indicated that poor sleep results in negative effects on hormones, brain functions, and exercise performance. It can also result in excessive weight gain and raises the risk of diseases in the case of both children and adults. Good sleep on the other hand results in less food consumption, better exercise routines, and in general better health. If you are looking to lose weight or improve your health a good night's sleep is one of the top priorities for you. Here are some tips.
1. Reduce long or irregular daytime naps
Although short power naps are useful, irregular and long naps during the day have negative effects on sleep. Daytime napping leads to confusion for the internal clock and causes a lack of sleep at night. As a matter of fact, in a study, the participants ended up feeling sleepier at daytimes after taking naps during the day. Various studies note that sleeping for 30 minutes or less enhances brain function but longer naps will harm sleep quality and health in general.
Other studies show that people used to taking daytime naps do not get lack of sleep or disrupted sleep at nighttime. If you are taking daytime naps and are sleeping well there is no need to worry because the effects of napping can vary with the individual.
2. Get regular exercise but not just before the bedtime
Exercise is one of the better ways of improving your health and quality of sleep and this fact is backed by science. Exercise enhances all aspects of your sleep and it has been utilized for reducing the symptoms of insomnia. A study conducted on older adults indicated that exercise such as biking by using gas powered bikes nearly reduced the time for falling asleep by half. It also gave 40 minutes more sleep during the night.
For people suffering from insomnia, physical exercise offered better treatment than most medicine. It was beneficial on all fronts such as time to fall asleep, night wakefulness, anxiety, and total sleep time. However, performing exercise too late in the day might not be a good idea because of the stimulating effect it leads to a rise in alertness and other hormones such as adrenaline or epinephrine.
3. Get a comfortable mattress and pillow
Many people wonder why they sleep better in hotels. Well, apart from the relaxing atmosphere, the quality of the bed can also affect your sleep. A study verified the advantages of using a new mattress and it revealed that it reduced back pain, reduced shoulder pain, and back stiffness. Even the sleep quality was also improved a great deal. Many studies are confirming this deduction that a new mattress enhances sleep.
A poor-quality mattress on the other hand will lead to greater lower back pain. What is considered the best mattress is mostly subjective. When you are upgrading the mattress, base your selection on personal preferences. It is recommended to upgrade the bedding after every 5-8 years.
4. Take a relaxing shower
Another extremely popular way of getting a night of better sleep is by taking a relaxing bath or shower. If your bathroom is old, you can consider shower replacement which will completely change the look of your bathroom as well as your shower experience. Studies have shown that these showers can raise overall sleep quality and can help people fall asleep quickly especially older people. If you can take a hot bath 90 minutes before bedtime, you will get better sleep quality and a night of deeper sleep. On the other hand, if you do not wish for a full bath at night just bathing the feet inside hot water helps you relax and get better sleep as a result.
Sleep has a key role to play in your overall health. Another study linked lack of sufficient sleep with obesity in the case of both children and adults. Other researches indicate that getting less than 7-8 hours’ sleep every night raises the risks of developing diabetes and heart diseases. When you are looking to achieve optimal health and well-being, it is a good idea to make sleep your top priority by using some of the tips above.
If you think your troubled sleep may be a symptom of obstructive sleep apnea contact your primary physician or your local sleep clinic for a sleep consultation. For more information on diagnosing, treating, and the possible consequences of untreated obstructive sleep apnea click here.