Sleep is an important aspect of maintaining good health. If you don’t get enough sleep, you not only open yourself up to a number of potential health issues, you’re also more likely to be tired all the time. This can lead to a lack of concentration and focus, poor decision-making, and a general feeling of being unwell. Here are a few ways to improve your sleeping habits.
Watch Your Diet
This doesn’t mean you have to stick to a specific diet, but avoiding certain foods and beverages close to bedtime can help ensure better sleep. Heavy meals late in the day, for example, can make you feel sluggish, and any caffeinated beverage can keep you awake. Likewise, drinking too much of any beverage can cause you to wake up during the night for trips to the bathroom, thus disrupting your sleep.
Keep To A Schedule
If you get in and out of bed at the same time every day, your body will grow accustomed to the routine, and when you start your nightly ritual it triggers your brain into realizing its time for sleep. If you follow the same ritual every day, such as doing certain things in the same order all the time, it will help your mind and body prepare for “sleep mode”.
Be Careful Of Naps
Obviously, the more disrupted you are, the less restful your sleep is. Turning off any extra noise can help ensure a more peaceful sleep. If you need some level of noise to help you sleep, consider using a fan, humidifier or noise machine instead of a TV or radio. The constant wave of noise can be more soothing, and is less disruptive than a program that may make unexpected sounds.
Now that you know a few ways to improve your sleeping habits, here are a few details about the potential health issues related to poor sleep.
If you consistently don’t get enough sleep, your cortisol levels are high. This leads to an increased appetite and potential weight gain. Left unchecked, significant weight gain can lead to its own problems, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes.
If you’re constantly tired, you aren’t able to focus as clearly as you would if you were well-rested. This can cause you to make poor decisions, or not respond properly to urgent or important matters.
Depression And Anxiety
While disrupted sleep doesn’t specifically cause depression, it does play a role. And while poor sleep can be a symptom of anxiety or depression, it can also make those and other mental health problems worse.
Maintaining good sleep habits is one of the best things you can do to ensure good health. If you want to stay healthy, getting enough sleep is a good place to start.