A Series on Sleep: The Importance of Sleep Hygiene- Part 1
How’s your sleep hygiene? No idea what that means? No worries, Hunny. I was there recently, too! Sleep hygiene is a variety of different practices and habits that are necessary to have good nighttime sleep quality and full daytime alertness.
This is a lot to unpack, so, we’re going to do it in parts. First, the effects of sleep deprivation and why sleep hygiene is so important. Then, what sleep hygiene looks like for me, what it can look like for you, and 5 new additions to my sleep routine!
I’d love to connect with you through this process! Let’s chat about your goals. Don’t know where to start? Want my best tips? DM me on Instagram or shoot me an e-mail! Please add “Sleep Hygiene” after your name!
Truth- I never thought sleep was that important. You couldn’t convince me that I needed to sleep more to live a healthier life. I was (so I thought) the healthiest I’d ever been! I was confusing the way my body looked and felt with the ways my body was functioning. Huge difference.
I averaged 4-6 hours a sleep a night for over a decade. The side-effects were catching up with me and I still didn’t make a change. Only when I saw the internal imbalances and cognitive effects occurring in my daily life did I decide that this was important to me. I encourage you to get ahead! Especially those of you who don’t think sleep is that important. Please value your health (yep, this includes sleep) before you’re forced to.
I hope this blog post will be enough to make you want to make a change!
I decided to put my head down and do some research. After deciding that good sleep hygiene was high on my priority list, I teamed up with my PCP who referred me to a sleep psychologist and we got to work. I’ll tell you, the psychology of sleep is sooo cool.
I like to parallel sleep to putting gas in a car. When you fill-up, your engine runs smoothly. When you’re low on gas, it still runs, just not as efficiently. Your body is much the same.
The more irregular your sleep patterns are, the higher your risk for obesity, hypertension, elevated blood sugar, heart disease, and cancer are. You will experience cognitive issues with memory, decision making, reasoning, problem-solving and alertness. Your risk of diabetes increases, you can gain weight, your libido diminishes, your skin suffers, and you’re at an increased risk for illness.
Yes, sleep helps you feel rested each day and that is important! But, it’s bigger than that. While you’re sleeping, your brain and body don’t just shut down. Internal organs and processes are hard at work throughout the night to be sure that you’re in optimal health in the morning. Sleep serves all aspects of our body in one way or another: molecular, energy balance, digestion, healing, intellectual function, alertness and mood.
Alright, let’s cap that there for now! Tons of new info and I’d like you to sleep on it (pun definitely intended 😉 ). In my next blog post, I’ll take you through my list of practices for good sleep hygiene and share 5 new products/items I’ve been loving lately.
Don’t forget to DM me, comment below, or comment on my instagram post to let me know what you’re thinkin’ of this whole sleep hygiene thing! New to you, have a sleep schedule, thinking about it?! Let me know!