Help Wanted: Seeking a Good Night Sleep

by | Feb 26, 2024 | Uncategorized

Remember the sleep you had when you were a kid? Do you remember hearing about the Sandman? That mythical figure that would sprinkle magic sand into your eyes and you were instantly asleep.And you could sleep for hours and hours and barely move an inch.When you woke up in the morning with those “crusties” in your eyes, it was the leftover magic sand, right?

As we age it can be challenging to get enough quality sleep. There can be many reasons for this including stress, stimulants, alcohol, pain, and poor mattress support. There is no easy solution. We try different substanceslike melatonin, Benadryl, and merlot. But it’s not the same.I’d sure love to have that magic sand again.

National Sleep Awareness weekis March 10-16th. It’s a great time to evaluate your sleeping habits and whether they serve you. Are you happy with your quality of sleep? Do you feel well rested after 7 or 8 hours? Do you have sleep conditions like obstructive sleep apnea that have gone untreated?

The number of research studies on how sleep quality affects physical and mental health are too numerous to tally.Think of sleep as the time for your body to carry out necessary maintenance. You can’t always be on the move. Your mind and body depend on frequent periods of rest. Poor sleep quality can manifest in many ways including: poor concentration, irritability, fatigue, weight gain, anxiety and depression, cardiovascular issues – the list goes on and on.

If good quality sleep is an issue for you, begin by developing a pre-sleep ritual that includes a combination of some tips listed below:

  • Stick to a consistent bedtime and wake up time.
  • Avoid alcohol.
  • Avoid eating a heavy meal within 3 hours or so of bedtime.
  • Try meditation and gentle stretching to relax the mind.
  • Use a diffuser to permeate the air with your favorite essential oils such as lavender.
  • Minimize or eliminate the use of electronic devices. The blue light that generates from your tablets and phones messes with melatonin production, keeping you awake longer.
  • Keep your bedroom dark and cool, ideally between 60-67 degrees.
  • Invest in a mattress that works for you and your style of sleeping.
  • Add white noise to the room. Small fans or sound generators work.

Many people suffer from medical issues that affect sleep. One in particular, obstructive sleep apnea, can have very serious health consequences. Most people with sleep apnea develop obstructions to the flow of air during sleep.This manifests in the person not breathing for a period of time, called apnea, followed by the abrupt initiation of breathing. This pattern can be repeated many times over the course of an hour and places a tremendous strain on the heart and body. Many people with sleep apnea resort to using expensive machines that force air down into their lungsvia a facemask.

One way you might reduce sleep apnea isby training yourself to breathe through your nose during sleep. Snoring can be a sign of obstructive sleep apnea. By following the Oxygen Advantage method of mouth-taping during sleep youbypass areas of obstruction, leading to a consistent flow of air through the respiratory tract. There are many other health advantages to the Oxygen Advantage breathwork. For more information, pleasevisit our Oxygen Advantage webpage.

Enjoy wellness,
Nurse Pete

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