A good night’s slumber is as much required for a human being as food and exercise. Quality sleep ensures good health and enables us to do whatever comes our way. Sleep takes care of both our physical and mental health. However, bad quality sleep or even less sleep can harm your body by causing various problems.
Sleep Deprivation and Sleep Deficiency
Sleep deprivation occurs when your body gets less sleep. Lack of sleep causes sleep deprivation. Whereas, sleep deficiency has a broader perimeter. Sleep deficiency occurs when you have :
- Lack of sleep or sleep deprivation.
- You tend to sleep in the wrong time so your body constantly goes out of sync with its natural clock.
- You have any kind of sleep disorder that doesn’t let your body get sufficient sleep.
- You don’t get good quality sleep.
Human beings need good sleep as they need food, oxygen and water. Sleeping means getting recharged. Good quality sleep makes sure that we are on a healthy track and living a better life. Whereas, on the other hand, sleep deficiency harms the human body by causing several different health problems, both physical and psychological. If proper measures are taken, then issues like injury, loss of productivity and higher risk of death can be kept at bay.
How do We Fall Asleep?
Our bodies take many factors into consideration and then only turn it on or off. Humans have a ‘body clock’, according to which our bodies work. This internal ‘body clock’ has a typical 24-hour rhythm pattern, also known as the Circadian Rhythm. This controlling system consists of two processes, the first creates the pressure that we feel with every hour that passes when we are awake. When this drive reaches its peak, most people tend to fall asleep. The second one includes the body clock itself. This so-called ‘clock’ is in harmony with fixed signals that are present in the environment, such as, light and dark. These natural phenomena decide when to feel awake and when to feel somnolent.
How Beneficial is Sleep for Humans?
Sleep plays an indispensable role when it comes to our good health and wellbeing. A good quality slumber aids not only our physical health but also takes care of our psychological health. Here’s what sleep does to the human body when they are in deep sleep:
- Improves brain function – when we sleep, our body recharges itself and prepares itself for the next day. It creates new ways to help us learn new information and remember the old ones. Studies show that deep, good quality sleep improves learning and helps you be attentive, decisive and productive.
- Aids physical health – our bodies get healed in sleep. Sleep also repairs our heart and blood vessels. Prolonged sleep deficiency increases the chances of diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure obesity and what not. Sleep also balances the two hormones that make us feel hungry (ghrelin) or full (leptin). Lack of sleep makes the level of ghrelin go up and leptin go down. Staying awake for a long time makes us feel hungry for this reason. Sleep promotes healthy growth in children and supports their overall development.
- Makes us perform better – good quality sleep during the right time helps us function better throughout. People suffering from sleep deficiency tend to get less productive at work. Sleep deficiency can also lead to microsleep. Popular as ‘naps’, microsleep refers to the very quick instances of sleep that occur during daytime. Microsleep is helpful but can cause harm to the body if practiced for a prolonged period of time.
How to Fall Asleep Without Fail?
As discussed earlier, good sleep is essential for our body. Here are some things that you can do to fall asleep quickly —
- Choose the right kind of mattress for yourself, for example, foam, innerspring or latex mattress.
- Keep the room temperature low, preferably between 60–67°F (15.6–19.4°C).
- Follow a routine and stick to it.
- Follow some breathing techniques. There are a lot of these techniques available online.
- Restrain yourself from looking at the clock for obvious reasons.
- Do not let the napping habit get you.
- Play some soothing music.
- Eat healthy and exercise daily.
- Fix an ‘eating’ time and do not cheat.
- Practice meditation and yoga.
- Lie down with a book.
- Try writing.
- Keep away the cellphone.
- Go for aromatherapy.
These are some of the proven methods that you can try to make your life better. Pick one and make sure to stick to it, no matter what.