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Tired... of not being able to sleep?

February 15, 2016


Tired of Sleep Deprivation?

Researchers say that interrupted sleep is worse than short sleep! What matters though is just how you sleep? Are you able to get a full 6 to 8 hours a night without stirring? Perhaps you're in bed for many hours, but just can't stay asleep for long enough. It's shocking to think that a vast majority of our population struggles to sleep. Many people report suffering from insomnia, while others keep waking continuously throughout the night, but are able to fall back asleep. If you've ever suffered from sleep deprivation, you will know just how exhausting it can be to attend work or school, day after day, with an empty bed of sleep.

An all too familiar question is; What type of sleep is bad for your health? Is it better to have only a few short hours of good solid sleep - after going to bed late, or is it healthier to go to bed at a regular time and find yourself awake every couple of hours?

Scientists just might have an answer

After carrying out new studies on 62 healthy men and women, Patrick Finan, author of Sleep journal and a professor of psychiatry and behavioural sciences, along with his colleagues at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, discovered a few interesting facts about sleep.

Over a period of three days the sleeping patterns and moods of test participants, all good sleepers, were monitored in a sleep lab. The participants were split into three groups for specific testing:

1. A control group which was left to sleep with no interruptions

2. Those that were woken up a few times each night

3. A final group that was kept awake until later, but allowed to sleep through the night.

On comparing the results of the mood ratings they found that on the first night, the participants who had interrupted sleep reported fewer positive feelings, which continued to decline over the next few nights. Those who slept well for a few hours only, experienced fewer positive thoughts in night one, but remained at the same level for the next two nights. They determined that disrupted sleep is likelier to reduce a positive mood than increase negative emotions.

The brain patterns of the disrupted sleepers showed that those who were woken up a number of times had less “slow wave or deep sleep”, which is the type of sleep required to leave you feeling well rested and refreshed.

The outcome - the more your sleep is disturbed, the greater decline you can expect in your emotions.

Below are a few tips to help you get a deeper and more restful sleep:

  • Choose a mattress that is well suited to your body type and can actually provide spine support.

  • Select a pillow that matches your sleep style.

  • Opt for linen that breathes well and won't get too hot.

  • Sleep in a dark room or wear eye pads to block out the light. You will have a more comfortable and restful sleep.

  • Put your mobile phone or device down at least 30 minutes before going to bed. This can help your mind to relax and prepare for sleep.

Here's to a good night's rest!

Image source: Flickr


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