Sleep is a necessity for all life on earth, and as human beings, we are more liberal with it. We treat sleep like something we should not take care of or follow random sleeping schedules, bad sleeping habits as if it's a luxury that not many people can maintain. There are worries, professional and personal schedules; all of us have to follow; however, few take care of sleep and health in general. Those without proper sleeping schedules or well-being might look at these things as secondary to their jobs, responsibilities, among other things. However, sleep is not a luxury or a side note to ignore. You should always follow a strict sleeping schedule as the consequences of ignoring sleep are too dire and too many.
Unlike following a diet, you do not need specific instructions and willpower. It takes some discipline and investment into yourself by making the right sleeping environment. Establishing a proper sleeping schedule will help you boost your health and fitness and avoid chances of getting severe chronic diseases. Working, eating, everything falls apart if you do not sleep properly. You may be using work, responsibilities as valid reasons to sleep less or in different schedules, but your body doesn't. As human beings, we are like any other animal and need to eat, sleep, work with some discipline.
Quality sleep vs. Poor sleep:
There is a huge difference that sets apart a good night's sleep and poor sleep. Quality sleep and poor sleep affect our bodies and minds in different ways. To give more perspective and explanation for the same, you can consider these points:
1. You have a good-quality sleep if you follow a sleeping pattern in an order which allows your body clock to work and optimize everything. Your digestive system, nervous system, and all other senses are resting on time. You sleep at the same time (more or less) every day and wake up feeling fresh.
2. You are sleeping correctly if you do not wake up in between for meals, bathroom breaks, checking your phone, among other activities. Good quality sleep has the brain go through necessary REM (Rapid Eye Movement) cycles, which is where our subconscious mind is most active. You have dreams occasionally and can wake up feeling mentally and physically fresh.
3. Good quality sleep is also an indicator of the right sleeping environment. You sleep on a compatible mattress and pillow to relieve pressure points in your body. You tend to wake up feeling fresh without waking up in between because of excessive heat or cold.
4. Moreover, good quality sleep is also an indicator of healthy sleeping habits and a balanced lifestyle. You go to sleep following a schedule and wake up in a relaxed, stress-free environment. Your sleeping habits are relaxing rather than stressful or exhaustive and unhealthy.
1. Poor sleep results from bad lifestyle choices, sleeping habits and is often a characteristic of random sleeping times. If you sleep through the day for longer than a power nap (15-20 minutes) or anything that can affect your body clock. An improper sleeping schedule is one of the leading causes of poor sleep.
2. If you go to bed and wake up in between feeling hungry, multiple washroom breaks, or light sleep, it means you have a poor sleep. This is mainly because of unhealthy sleeping habits. Things like eating junk, alcohol, coffee, working, or binging before bed can cause these sleep issues.
3. Poor sleep is also a side consequence of sleep deprivation problems like insomnia, body ailments related to shoulders and back, obesity, and sleep apnea. Snoring can also disturb the person facing it and anyone in the room, leading to bad overall sleep quality.
4. Bad mattress or pillow choices can further impact sleep in the long-term. They can lead to mental and physical stress as sleeping using incompatible pillows and mattresses every day affects the body. Moreover, poor sleeping habits can result in other physical issues as your body has to catch up on sleep in the day time, leaving less time for work and exercise.
Effects of poor sleep and sleep deprivation:
Poor sleep has various disadvantages and adverse effects that can put anyone under immense mental and physical stress. Poor sleep and sleep deprivation by itself take away the body's ability to relax and recover. Our bodies go through several stages of mind relaxation and recovery of internal and external systems. Here are the effects of poor sleep and deprivation:
- Mental stress: Sleep deprivation can both be caused by mental stress and lead to additional mental issues. Improper sleep can lead to waking up in the middle of the night, unable to sleep, aggravating anxiety, and possible insomnia. Moreover, sleeping without any fixed routine can cause lifestyle issues and difficulty staying productive or physically active. Issues like this can lead to depression, anxiety, obesity, among other mental and physical issues.
- Physical issues: Poor quality sleep can make it difficult for the body to recover and reset, making blood pressure, diabetes, obesity much more common. If you are sleeping excessively or little, it means your body either has sleep debt from poor quality sleep from previous days or issues staying asleep because of lifestyle. These issues can be short-term, but they can become long term without changing the lifestyle. Moreover, poor quality sleep also compromises your immune system and internal systems like metabolism.
Tips for sleeping better:
Poor sleep can affect your body, personal, and professional life with a cascade of issues. If you ignore one alert from your body and keep on with an unhealthy lifestyle that ignores good sleep, it can raise another signal before a severe diagnosis. But there is no need to worry as the willingness to change with small steps every day can lead to significant progress in the long run:
1. Lifestyle changes: If your excuse to not sleep properly is your work or other responsibilities, you have to realize your body can not carry on with it in the long run. Working night shifts, ignoring sleep because of work, or sleeping excessively during the day can cause body clock issues. These issues take time to fix and heal mentally, as we prefer to go to sleep when we feel our body is tired, without exploring the reason behind it. If you feel tired and lazy during the day time, it can be because of poor quality sleep or junk food. Excessive physical activity can tire anyone out, but as long as you can stick to a power nap, you should not give in to the temptation of sleeping during the day.
2. Exercise: Exercise breaks down our cells and replaces them with new, better ones that can withstand the body's workout. Something similar happens during sleep too, when every part of our body regenerates new cells and systems heal from the previous day's activity. However, if there is less activity and more sitting without much exercise, the body slows down its metabolism to cooperate with this lifestyle. As a result, it leads to less energy used, more energy stored (fat not converted and stored), and less adequate sleep.
You feel sleepy at odd times in unhealthy patterns affecting one lifestyle choice after another, like a pack of dominos. Exercise helps our body move and boost everything as human beings are like other animals where we need to be active to survive. Moreover, less exercise would not only lead to poor sleep but also enhanced aging and obesity.
3. Diet adjustments: Changing your diet or sticking to a healthy diet helps fix everything from exercise to sleeping habits. Foods having more fat and oil make us lazy and less active to do anything after as the body has to spend time converting it. However, a balanced diet can help make being physically active and getting good quality sleep effortless. Avoiding junk food or caffeine in any form up to 5-7 hours before sleep will help keep fat away and your digestive system healthier.
It would help if you had plenty of water throughout the day to avoid having to wake up for water as a water deprivation sign in sleep. Our bodies consume and repair everything we put into it and absorb and transfer it to all our cells in sleep every day. Like a car, maintaining it with the best fuel quality will help it last longer and show more mileage.
4. Sleeping habits: Many people take their stresses, work, and personal issues to bed every night. Without working on them, we choose to ignore and use our mobiles and televisions to watch stuff and eat or drink late into the night. If you are in this phase, you know it doesn't feel good in the morning or even guarantees good sleep. The best way to set sleeping habits is to start one thing and stick to it for at least 21 days. This helps wire this habit into our body. Journaling, reading, spending time with partners or family away from mobile screens can help live a better lifestyle and better sleep quality. Moreover, it would help if you always remembered to keep your devices away at least an hour away to unwind and enforce any habits you're trying to instill.
5. Sleeping environment: Changing your sleeping environment might not always be possible due to location, finances, people sleeping in the room, or other issues. But you can always try to get a better environment by adjusting the room temperature to the cooler side and switching your bedding for better quality ones. Changing your mattress and pillow, adjusting your lighting can have a substantial immediate and long-term impact on your health and lifestyle. A high-quality mattress and pillow help your body relax better in the short and long term. Moreover, the sleeping environment can also impact your habits, and you should strive to make changes where possible.
How can a mattress help improve sleep quality?
A mattress stays with you for a long time, 5-10 years, depending on the mattress type. Your diet, lifestyle, sleeping habits may change, but your mattress stays the same. A high-quality mattress becomes more of a necessity than a luxury if you consider the investment and use out of it. And getting the right mattress helps support you in your sleep and lifestyle by keeping you healthy and relaxed mentally and physically. If you're looking to change the way you sleep, you should start by changing your mattress.
High-quality mattresses help conform to your body and relax both internal and external organs. You can go to sleep better, knowing that your health is safe with a mattress that your body loves, and you can see it every day. A good quality mattress will change your sleeping time, but a compatible, high-quality mattress will change your sleeping and waking lifestyle, boosting your overall health.
Mattresses and pillows also help relax your nervous and digestive system by supporting everything in its natural state. You can see positive results in the first 30 days itself, and an incompatible mattress will show the opposite adverse effects. If you cannot always actively look after yourself, a mattress looks after you in your sleep and helps you through the tough times we all face.
Poor sleep is dangerous not only for your body but for others around you. If sleeping poorly can be a domino effect on your body's unhealthy lifestyle, it can lead to others' issues in your family and surroundings. The better you or your family sleep, the better health you invite and stay healthier, mentally, and physically. Poor sleep is an indicator of a destructive lifestyle, not a poor one, and isn't a luxury. Simple choices put into action every day can change everything that stresses you out in terms of exercise and sleep. You can rely on high-quality mattresses, good diets, and everything else, but taking care of your body has to be the first priority.