How to Get Better Sleep

Sleep is an essential part of our daily lives that allows our body and mind to function properly. There are a variety of mental health disorders and other factors that can contribute to a lack of sleep. Using techniques to get better sleep and improve the quality of your sleep can help your body function as intended. 

Know the Recommendations

To get a healthy amount of sleep, it is essential to know how much sleep you need. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) outlines the average recommendations of sleep required for each age group. Understanding these recommendations is important to ensure you receive the right amount of sleep for you. Some individuals may have health conditions that require or recommend them to alter this amount; however, a basic sleep time frame is most beneficial for each age group.

Younger Children

Younger children need drastically more sleep to function than adults do. For newborns, 14 to 17 hours of sleep a day is recommended. This lowers to 12 to 16 hours from four months to one year old and 11 to 14 hours for one to two-year-old children. Preschool-aged children are recommended to have 10 to 13 hours of sleep per day. Elementary school-aged children should have approximately 9 to 12 hours of sleep per night. 

Teenagers and Adults

Once you reach an older age, the amount of sleep needed is drastically lowered from that of a newborn. Reaching teenage years, eight to ten hours of sleep is recommended each night. As an adult, seven to nine hours of sleep is recommended. As we age, we can function with less sleep. Receiving seven hours of sleep at a minimum is recommended for all adults. 

Techniques to Fall Asleep

One of the most common issues with creating a healthy sleep schedule is having the ability to fall asleep quickly. Many people find that they lie in bed for hours, feeling tired, but are not able to fall asleep. This is not the case with everyone but can cause proper sleep to be hard to obtain. The following techniques can be implemented into your nightly routine to help you fall asleep easier.

Consistency is Key

Establishing a set time you wish to begin your nightly routine and want to go to bed is essential. Consistently working on going to bed by a specific time every night will help your body adjust to that routine, allowing it to recognize that it is time to sleep. Going to bed at differing times every night can make it much harder to fall asleep and more challenging to acquire beneficial sleep.

Set Up Your Surroundings

The environment you are sleeping in can significantly impact your ability to fall asleep. If you are sensitive to light or sound, ensure you are away from light and sounds that may keep your mind awake. Having a comfortable temperature can also help you to fall asleep faster. 

Removing all electronics also plays a significant role in your ability to fall asleep. Many individuals like to fall asleep while watching TV or scrolling through social media. However, these actions keep your mind awake for a longer time.

Physically Prepare Yourself

Setting up your surroundings helps set your mind up to sleep, but focusing on your physical body is also important. If you engage in exercise during the day, your chances of restful sleep are much higher. Stretching before bed can help relax your muscles and prepare you for the night. Avoid eating meals, excessive snacking, caffeine, alcohol, or sugar for a couple of hours before bed. Having a digested stomach when you try to fall asleep can help improve your quality of sleep.

The Importance of Sleep

Sleep is an essential part of our biological functioning and is necessary to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Sleep allows the following processes to occur:

  • Remove toxins

  • Filter memories

  • Emotional regulation

  • Release of hormones

  • Cardiovascular rest

  • Maintaining your immune system

Without receiving a proper amount of sleep, your ability to regulate these physical aspects is drastically lowered. This can lead to a variety of health issues. The likelihood of mental health disorders, obesity, cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, and various other conditions setting in is drastically increased from a consistent lack of quality sleep.

Sleep disorders are important to be aware of when observing your sleeping habits. If you find that these techniques do not work for you and you are consistently struggling with your sleep, you may have a sleeping disorder you need to overcome. Talking with your primary care physician or a mental health professional can help you understand techniques specific to your disorder or help ensure you are receiving quality sleep.

Sleep is an essential part of our daily lives to ensure our body can regulate itself and properly function. Taking the actions to ensure you are receiving an adequate amount of sleep and good quality sleep can help improve your mental and physical health. By implementing a few simple practices into your nightly routine, you can reinforce consistent sleep habits and adopt a better quality of sleep. Being consistent in your bedtime and wake-up time, physically preparing yourself for both sleep and waking, and setting up your surroundings can contribute to a successful night’s sleep. If you are struggling with the life changes necessary to get good sleep, the professionals at SokyaHealth are here to help. To learn more about improving your sleep patterns and quality of sleep and to learn more about our services, reach out to SokyaHealth today at (877) 840-6956.

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