3 Reasons Not to Skip Sleep This Season…Plus 3 Tips For Better Sleep

With the current landscape and the busyness of the season, it’s easy to burn the candle at both ends. Unfortunately, with all this hustle and bustle, our sleep is the one area that can end up suffering the most.

Sleep is an essential pillar of health. Along with diet and exercise, sleep health is vital to living well. We spend one-third of our lives sleeping. Anyone who has experienced any disruption in their sleep will attest to the impact on every part of life.

3 Reasons Not to Skip Sleep

The difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep, known as insomnia, affects many people. Although the odd sleepless night is not something to worry about, chronic disrupted Sleep can significantly impact our health.

Although there are many negative health consequences from poor sleep, we wanted to highlight three major areas: 

  • Increased Development of Medical Conditions: The odds of having any chronic medical problems are 5x higher for those that struggle with chronic insomnia than those who don’t.
  • Increased Pain Levels: In a 2008 general population study, the research highlighted the relationship between sleep duration and following-day pain.  Getting less than six hours (or more than nine hours) of sleep was associated with substantial increases in pain frequency the following day.
  • Decreased Performance Levels: Sleep deprivation makes us less productive even though we think we’re getting ahead. Sleeping less than seven hours per night has decreased performance testing in alertness, reaction time, memory and decision-making.

Tips for Better Sleep

Since sleep is a behaviour, it stands to reason that our sleep habits can influence our sleep quality and duration. Here are a few tips to improve your Sleep: 

Tip #1: Keep your Reading, Working and TV Watching out of the Bedroom

Although one’s bed can seem like a comfortable extension of the couch, performing activities other than sleep can result in poor behavioural conditioning. This behavioural conditioning is because these activities connect with the bedroom; unfortunately, sleep gets left behind.  

Tip #2: Avoid Drinking Before Bed to Help You Fall Asleep

With this busy season, it’s easy to get stressed. And although we may think that an alcoholic drink will help us sleep better, it doesn’t. Alcohol can help you fall asleep more quickly, but it can result in less deep sleep and a fragmented sleep cycle. The result?  Feeling less refreshed and rested the next day.

Tip #3: Stay away from Falling Asleep in Front of the TV

Although watching some TV can help us unwind from a busy day, it’s best to avoid falling asleep in front of the TV. Watching TV can be relaxing, but the habit of falling asleep in front of the TV means you are behaviourally pairing sleep with the TV.  Your couch becomes your sleep sanctuary as opposed to your bedroom! You’ll struggle to fall asleep when you go to bed because your brain has not equated sleep with the bed and bedroom.

Book an Appointment Today!

We hope you don’t forget to take care of yourself by getting enough sleep.

Please book an appointment with one of Innovation Physical Therapy’s experienced physiotherapists by calling one of our five clinics throughout Edmonton, including RiverbendBelvedereNamao, West Henday or Southgate.

Innovation Physical Therapy is here to help you love getting better!