Can you recall the feeling of some particular days when your concentration is zero, you can hardly keep your eyes open, and even caffeine does not help? The usual excuses in these cases are about cloudy weather, or spring fault. But what those days tell about, are the typical symptoms of lack of sleep hours or low-quality of sleeping.
Sleep is a very important element to have good health. The reason for that is because sleeping hours serve to relax and to renovate body’s functions. When we have enough sleeping hours, including the deep sleeping hours, the body organs (brain, heart, skin, etc.) get relaxed and gain the needed energy to function properly. My father used to say: “Sleeping is a little death”. This was the prevailing philosophy among his generation, thus the tendency of people was to sleep as little as they could. If we add to that, the recent technological developments, finally, everyone is able to see the consequences of sleeping deficiencies.
Scientists advice that humans need different number of sleeping hours in different stages of their life. You may find in the table below information about sleeping hours needed based on age-groups. These hours are considered to be necessary in order to fully benefit from sleeping as a physiological process to maintain good health:
|Age-groups||Needed sleeping hours to have good health|
|Newborns (0 – 3 months)||14 – 17 sleeping hours/day|
|Babies (4 – 11 months)||12 – 15 sleeping hours/day|
|Toddlers (1 – 2 years)||11 – 14 sleeping hours/day|
|Kindergarten (3 – 5 years)||10 – 13 sleeping hours/day|
|Kids (6 – 13 years)||9 – 11 sleeping hours/day|
|Teenagers (14 – 17 years)||8 – 10 sleeping hours/day|
|Adults (18 – 64 years)||7 – 9 sleeping hours/day|
|Seniors (+65 years)||7 – 8 sleeping hours/day|
The unique fact about sleep is that: lack of sleep does have direct negative impact on our health. It worsens our ability to concentrate. It creates conditions for obesity (89% for children and 55% for adults). It increases the risks for: difficult cardio-vascular diseases, bones health, kidneys issues, diabetes, brain diseases, etc. Something to be mentioned about sleep:
Humans could only survive 11 days without sleep.
And this is less than the number of days humans could survive without water (14 days) and days without eating (60 days). Surprisingly, people seems to not recognize, nor appreciate the significancy sleeping has on their health. The reason I’m saying this, is because sleeping hours are most neglected from people throughout all generations nowadays.
Scientists say that it takes 20 minutes optimally for a healthy adult to fall in sleep, after being laid in the bed.
What should we do to have good sleep? Physicians and researchers offer advice in two main directions about sleep: (i) how to eliminate factors that worsen the quality of sleep, and (ii) how to create the right conditions for a good sleep.
How to eliminate Factors that Worsen the Quality of Sleep
- Eliminate heavy meals before sleeping and avoid sensitive food, such as: sugar, grains and pasteurized diary.
- Do not drink coffee or tea at least 6 hours before sleeping. Attention! Check carefully the composition of your drugs, because some of them might contain caffeine.
- Do not drink liquids at least 1 – 2 hours before sleeping.
- Eliminate dopes and alcohol in general, and especially during the hours before sleep.
- Do not exercise at least 3 hours before sleeping.
- Do not cover your head while sleeping, you reduce the amount of oxygen needed for good sleeping.
- Reduce excessive body weight, as obesity impacts the quality of breathing during sleeping.
- Eliminate blue lights from the place you stay after sunset. Remove Led lamps and phosphorescent lamps from your house. Minimize the usage of mobiles, computers, tablets and TV.
- Do not take days naps longer than 1 hour. Long day naps worsen the night sleeping.
How to Create Right Conditions for High Quality Sleeping
I. Expose Yourself in Sunlight for at least 1 hour in Daily Basis.
This is one of the core physiological conditions to have good sleeping. This is the reason why prisoners get daily air time of 1 hour. Studies say that if an adult get exposed in sunlight for 2 hours/day, he/she increases by 2 hours total sleeping hours and assure increase by 80% the quality of sleep.
II. Improve Conditions of Your Bedroom on Regular Basis.
It is necessary to replace your pillow every year, to replace your quilt every 5 years and replace your mattress every 10 years. Remove extra furniture and stuff from your bedroom. Keep high hygiene in your bedroom.
See our proposals for: quilts and mattresses (king size with huge sale and single mattress for your kids). Click on the products’ photos to see more details and to replace your existing sleeping products.
III. Eliminate any Lights in the Bedroom.
Do not keep in bedroom WiFi equipment, electronic wake up equipment, computer, mobile, tablet, night lights. Sleeping in complete dark is the other physiological condition to have good sleep. Usage of high-quality sleep masks could help for this.
IV. Exercise at Least for 30 minutes/day
V. Optimize the Air Temperature in Bedroom.
Keep it between 18˚C – 20˚C. Eliminate swelter in the summer by wearing light cotton clothes or no clothes at all.
For better measuring of the bedroom temperature we recommenced two products: (i) Digital Room Thermometer and Moisture Measuring, and (ii) Baby Thermometer for Room and Bath. Click on the photos of the products to buy them.
VI. Perform Relaxing Activities before Sleeping.
It is highly recommended to perform relaxing activities during the last hours before sleeping. Such activities are: listen relaxing music, read spiritual books or ‘light’ books, embroider, meditate, perform hot baths, etc.
VII. Create Regime for Your Sleeping Hours.
Go to bed and wake up at the same hour every day. Going to bed before 10.00 p.m. is highly advisable to maintain a beautiful skin.
VIII. Learn to Sleep in Neutral Position
Always lay down in bed with your face facing the ceiling, your body positioned straight and relaxed. Make sure to fully place your neck on the pillow; you can achieve this by upholding your shoulders to the edge of your pillow (check out the pillows below here, click on the photo). You’ll feel the relaxation of the neck and the body, when reaching the neutral sleeping position.
IX. Stretch Your Body Before Sleeping
You can do the stretching before going to bed, or at the very first moment you lay down in the bed.
X. Make Sure to use the Toilet Before Sleeping
XI. Do not go to Bed in Angry Mood
If you had a debate with your family, make sure to clarify the issue before going to bed. Going to bed while you’re still angry does not help to have a good sleep.
XII. Do not go to Bed Unless you Feel Sleepy
This is my personal advice for you. I have this habit of not being able to sleep at all, until I feel sleepy. So, I always go to sleep when I feel sleepy enough. This helps me to have good quality sleeping (deep sleeping hours as well).
XIII. Teach Your Child with Early Sleeping Hours Regime
Parents need some extra hours to get ready to sleep, after they children fall asleep. Make sure to teach your children with early hours sleep regime since they are little babies, in order to allow yourself enough spare time to finish your tasks and get ready to sleep. Late sleepers are source of stress for parents and could cause decrease in the quality of your sleep.
Here is a great book that will help you how to create an early-hours-sleep regime for your babies. Click on the photo to buy it.
Summarizing: If you need to have good sleeping there are 4 important points to be remembered:
- Respect the Physiological Rhythm of your body.
- Use as little as possible electronic devices during both day and night.
- Plan for relaxing activities at the end of your day.
- Educate your children with the same sleeping regime as yours.
Attention dear friends! Make sure to pay the right attention to your sleeping hours and quality of your sleep. Only when you fulfill the needed sleeping hours and have good quality sleep, you could be healthy and highly productive in your professional and social life.
I’m aware it is not easy to fulfill all of the above-mentioned advises at once, as that would require a complete change in your lifestyle. But, you can start by applying them one-after-the-other. In case you have serious sleeping problems (pronounced insomnia, etc), then I’m sorry but you have to make drastic changes in the way you live and sleep. All of them are worthy to have good health and to live quality life.
Sweet Dreams to Everyone!
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