Sleeping well is critical for good health; everyone knows that. But what most people don’t realize is that there are serious sleep problems that we don’t often think of. There is the common problem of snoring and sleep apnea. Still, more severe issues like insomnia and sleep apnea can seriously affect your health and quality of life.
The purpose of this post is to outline some common problems associated with sleep and some solutions to help you achieve the recommended amount of sleep:
Why Is Sleep So Vital To Health?
Sleep is an essential part of your daily life. It provides you with the rest that you need to function optimally in your day-to-day routines. During sleep, the body goes through cycles that cause the information to be stored more efficiently in our brains for easy retrieval. Without sufficient amounts of deep sleep cycles, you can become fatigued and lack focus; you also don’t absorb as much information from your environment or retain memories as well as you otherwise would. This results in impaired cognitive function. Not only does sleep help the body’s natural healing abilities, but it also helps to keep the immune system strong. Sleep deprivation can lead to an increased risk for chronic diseases such as:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
Things You Can Do To Get A Good Night’s Sleep
Getting a good night’s sleep is becoming increasingly difficult in today’s world, especially for light sleepers. And the reason for this is not just stress and anxiety; another cause is technology, specifically mobile devices. They emit blue light, which disturbs our natural circadian rhythm and makes it difficult for us to fall asleep at night. In order to counter this, people are turning to all kinds of techniques to help them sleep better; these can include taking CBD gummy bears to help you sleep, to using special filters at night that reduces the blue light from their devices. The best method tends to be a combination of multiple techniques such as:
- Changing your eating habits (food quality and eating times)
- Establishing a sleep schedule and sticking to it
- Moving more throughout the day
- Take sleeping supplements such as melatonin
- Avoiding caffeine from the afternoon onwards
- Reducing alcohol intake
- Getting healthier in general
Common Sleeping Problems
There are many different types of sleeping problems. Some issues only happen at night, like insomnia or sleep apnea, and daytime issues, like lack of physical stimulation. Poor sleep hygiene, stress, unhealthy eating habits, and irregular bedtimes are common reasons for sleep deprivation.
A person who has insomnia may have trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or getting enough sleep. Several factors can contribute to insomnia, including:
- Chronic pain
- Certain medications
It is crucial for those who have insomnia to consult their doctor for treatment since insomnia can cause physical and psychological harm if it is left untreated.
Sleep apnea is a disorder of breathing during sleep. People with this disorder have pauses in their breathing, followed by quick breaths. These episodes are typically followed by loud snoring or gasping for air. The delays in breathing usually last 10 to 20 seconds. Sleep apnea is caused due to the obstruction of the upper airways due to excess tissue in the throat or tongue, enlarged tonsils, obesity, and nasal congestion. Alcohol or drugs that dilate blood vessels, such as antidepressants and decongestants, can also trigger it. In addition to posing a life-threatening threat, it seriously disrupts sleep patterns and causes poor sleep. Treatments for the condition include lifestyle changes such as weight loss and quitting smoking, removing obstructions in the airway, surgery to correct the airway, or using a CPAP machine that supplies pressurized air into the throat while asleep.
Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS)
Restless legs syndrome is a neurological disorder that affects the nervous system and makes it hard for those affected to move or stay still. The main symptom of Restless Legs Syndrome is a restless feeling in the legs, usually accompanied by an urge to move the legs. The sensations are generally described as unpleasant and uncomfortable.
People with Restless Legs Syndrome may experience these sensations for hours each day, or they may only have them once in a while. The most common trigger is when someone sits still for too long without moving their muscles, like in a theatre seat or when watching TV. But it can also be triggered by other things like pregnancy, menopause, diabetes, kidney failure, thyroid problems, neurological disorders, and even taking certain medications for pain relief or depression.
From RLS to sleep apnea, a broad range of issues exist that can keep you from getting a decent night’s sleep. Forutnaulaty, most cases only require a small change to improve your sleeping habits.
*Photos by EKATERINA BOLOVTSOVA