Malendure beach sunset, Guadeloupe
One week into my holidays and I can already feel the stress leaving my body. My sleep has never been better and I have to say that it wasn’t hard! Guadeloupe is an amazing place ?
I’m sleeping 9 hours a night without waking up, turning or going to the toilet. Not even once! For me, that is a real sign of calmness and total relaxation.
I don’t know about you, but when I’m really stressed and tired I have trouble falling asleep. I keep waking up several times a night without any reason and I get up to go to the toilet at least once.
I wouldn’t say I have a bladder problem, it’s just that my body cannot switch off easily from daily stress, which keeps me awake and doesn’t allow me to fall into a deep sleep.
“30% of adults and 66% of adolescents are sleep deprived”
Sleep is one of the most important things to think about when our body is in pain. Sleep deprivation is one the worst problems affecting our quality of life. In the US, studies revealed that 30% of adults and 66% of adolescents are sleep deprived – meaning that a huge part of the population is not getting enough sleep per night. The numbers are impressive and really quite scary!
Sleep is something I often question my patients about on the initial consultation. Usually, the answer is that sleep is not a problem for them, as most of my patients are already trying to sleep between 7-8 hours a night. Yet, the real question for everyone is: “Are we getting deep and restorative sleep every night?” The kind of sleep that makes us sleep an entire night without waking up and makes us wake up in the morning feeling well and energized.
For some of my patients, this is a really hard thing to do because pain is often one of the reasons that affect their sleep. Nonetheless, it is a vicious cycle, the less you sleep, the more pain you will be in because your brain will be very tired and feel “under threat” all the time.
Take a quick look at this interesting video that explains why not sleeping enough is harmful for us:
According to the video, on average, adults need to sleep between 7 to 8 hours a night. What science has demonstrated so far is that chronically sleeping less than 6 hours a night can result in problems affecting the memory, mood, learning capacity, reaction time, concentration and the way the brain processes pain. Hormonal imbalance, high levels of inflammation, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity and higher risk stroke have also been linked to lack of sleep.
Why is sleep so important for the body?
It is during deep sleep stages that the muscles truly relax, and the body is replenished for the day ahead and DNA is repaired. Our bodies have a system of self-cleansing that is active during sleep and it helps to clean all the waste products that have been accumulated in the brain during the day. If these waste
products aren’t cleared away they will collectively overload the brain resulting in all the problems mentioned above. On the other hand, if we do have restorative sleep every night we are helping our bodies and brains to stay healthy as they are able to repair themselves. This will contribute to low levels of inflammation and less pain.
8 tips on how to sleep better:
In my case, my sleep has never been better because I’m enjoying a wonderful break in a beautiful paradise in the Caribbean. I’m pretty sure that helps a lot! ☺ However, we don’t need this to calm down our central nervous system during daily life.
Small little habits such as:
– finding time for meditation or mindfulness regularly during the day
– exercising regularly
– being connected to nature regularly
– switching off our phones and emails regularly during the day and before going to bed
– not being exposed to blue light 2 hours before going to bed – blue light from computers, TV’s, smartphones, tablets….interferes with the production of melatonin
– going to bed early and around the same time every night – to create a routine and give you time to sleep 7-8 hours
– avoiding sugar during the day but especially before going to sleep
– make sure your room is dark, free of noise and ventilated.
All of these can really make a difference when it comes to having good and restorative sleep every night!
What do you think? Are you ready to start sleeping better? ?