Getting quality sleep every night can make you feel like your best self. Healthy sleep habits improve your mood, memory, strengthen your immune system, and also make it easier to maintain a healthy diet.
When you aren’t getting enough sleep, you might have low energy, feel depressed, foggy, and slow. In some cases, it will be evident that you aren’t sleeping well, but in other cases, the adverse effects of inadequate sleep accumulate gradually. This means that you can quickly become accustomed to unhealthy sleep habits without realizing their impact on your life and health.
It is extremely important to consider your nightly experience of sleep and your sleep habits. Healthy sleep means getting quality, uninterrupted sleep over a certain number of hours and consistently doing so. Here are some ideas that can help you develop healthy sleep habits.
What Are the Components of Healthy Sleep Habits
It is important to time your sleep in a 24 hour period. Circadian rhythms involve integration between cues from the environment and your body’s internal clock. Light exposure is one of the essential regulators of circadian rhythms since exposure to light prompts biological processes that make you feel aware, while darkness triggers chemical changes that facilitate sleep.
When your sleep timing isn’t aligned with your circadian rhythms, it becomes more difficult to initiate sleep and sleep enough to feel well-rested. Maintaining a regular bedtime promotes healthy sleep and reduces the risk of adverse health effects.
A crucial part of quality sleep is getting a healthy amount of sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, it is recommended that adults get between 7 to 9 hours of sleep. The rapid development and growth of youth mean that children need additional hours of sleep; teens need 8 to 10 hours of sleep, while babies might require up to 17 hours of sleep every night.
Although each person’s sleep needs often vary due to activity level, genetic makeup, and daily schedule, these optimal sleep duration guidelines will help you develop healthy sleep habits. However, it is possible that you might need more sleep or thrive on less sleep than these guidelines suggest.
To acquire quality sleep, you should sleep straight through the night with minimal disruptions. Undisrupted sleep is restorative, while disrupted sleep inhibits you from cycling through the four stages of sleep, which keeps you from obtaining REM sleep and getting a healthy amount of deep sleep. For instance, due to lapses in breathing during the night, individuals with sleep apnea suffer from the effects of sleep deprivation even though their sleep duration often appears normal.
Getting continuous sleep serves a vital role in support of your body and brain functioning, which makes continuous sleep as essential as sleep duration. With considerable sleep continuity, you will be able to perform cognitive tasks the next day.
How Can You Develop Healthy Sleep Habits
By Establishing a Regular Bedtime and Honoring it
Making a commitment towards what you plan to accomplish and sticking to it is the first step to behavioral change. After establishing a regular bedtime, try to stick to your plan as much as possible.
To achieve this, you might have to put aside all your electronic devices to avoid the temptation of exposing yourself to blue light right before going to bed. You might also want to set an alarm that would remind you when you need to start getting ready for bed.
By Setting a Sleep Goal
To have the energy to tackle everyday demands, you should aim at getting at least 7 hours of sleep every night. This will help ensure that you wake up refreshed, which will enable you to stick to your exercise and diet plan and make smarter decisions. Sleeping better will boost your willpower, giving you the motivation you need to fend off temptations.
By Eating Healthier
You might misread hunger cues when your mind and body are fatigued. It is common to mistake emotions and fatigue for hunger. So the next time you find yourself mindlessly snacking at your computer or wandering into the kitchen in the middle of the night, recollect that you might be tired rather than hungry.
By Easing Into Sleep
To ease your transition into sleep, set aside some time before bed for relaxation. Practice a few guided imagery, deep breathing exercises, gentle stretching, progressive muscle relaxation, or meditation to help you focus on the present and not on your worries.
Furbish Your Sleep Habits
The benefits of adequate sleep go beyond getting rid of the dark circles under your eyes. Dedicating yourself to observing the tips outlined above is the best way to develop healthy sleep habits.
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