Lethargic through the day or finding it difficult to go through your day without constant doses of caffeine? Impairing cognitive function isn’t the only disadvantage of managing without adequate sleep every day. Poor sleeping habits can lower your immunity, lead to cardiovascular conditions, cause glucose /insulin abnormalities, and more commonly cause dysfunction in hormones that control appetite.
If you’re looking to get healthy, one of the first things to address would be your sleeping habits. And here’s how you can do it – by understanding how much sleep you need and by practicing good sleeping habits.
How Much Sleep Do You Need?
The various factors that determine the amount of sleep you need includes your age, way of life, health, and whether you have been getting enough sleep recently. Depending on your age, the general recommendations for a healthy individual for sleep are:
Infants: 16-18 hours a day
Preschool-aged children: 11-12 hours a day
School-aged children: At least 10 hours a day
Teenagers: 9-10 hours a day
Adults and elderly: 7-8 hours a day
Five Ways to Sleep Better
Good sleep habits can keep you healthy, vital and well! Getting the sleep you need every day can make you alert and get better at what you do, whether you are a parent, an employee or a student. So here are five tips that can help you get your much needed shut-eye:
Have a consistent sleep schedule: Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on the weekends. Being consistent strengthens your body’s sleep-wake cycle and can aid in sleep quality in long term.
If you struggle with sleep for more than 20 minutes, get up and do something soothing such as read or listen to relaxing music and go back to bed when you’re tired.
Watch out for what you eat and drink: Avoid eating heavy or large meals for at least two hours before bedtime. Your discomfort from indigestion might keep you up. Alcohol, Nicotine, and caffeine too can disrupt sleep, thus avoid having them before going to bed.
Optimize your bedroom environment: Try to enhance your bedroom environment by creating the room that is cool, dark and free of noise. Make your mattress and pillows are comfortable. Avoid use of light-emitting screens just before bedtime
A relaxing bath or shower before bedtime is another popular way to improve your sleep quality.
Reduce long daytime naps: Long or irregular napping during the daytime can interfere with night time sleep. If you have trouble sleeping at night, stop napping or shorten your naps.
Exercise daily, but not before bed time: Regular physical activity is one of the best ways to improve your health and sleep. But doing it late in the evening may cause problems falling asleep for some people.