Sleep Hygiene- Sleep hygiene is in reference to non-medical treatment options to better ones slumber. Below are ways to improve ones sleep hygiene.
Obesity- When an individual is over weight it is most likely that they will suffer from sleep apnea (Marks, 2012). Sleep Apnea is a common disorder in which you have one or more pauses in breathing or shallow breaths while you sleep (Marks, 2012) http://www.medicinenet.com/sleep_apnea/article.htm. When patients are obese they often suffer from obstructive sleep apnea (Marks, 2012). They extra weight crushes their trachea creating a loud snoring sound or create long pauses where the body is deprived of oxygen (Marks, 2012). I lived with a person with obstructive sleep disorder and he would gasp from time to time like he was held under water. Not only is it scary to hear someone having to fight to breath when they sleep, they are often unrested and lethargic throughout the day (Marks, 2012). REM sleep is interrupted when you have to fight to breath while you sleep (Marks, 2012). Studies conclude that patients with sleep apnea are generally obese (Marks, 2012). Studies have also shown that people that get enough sleep crave fewer sweets and empty caloric food (Wilkey, 2012). If your news year’s resolution is to loose weight, add on the sleep. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/06/obesity-and-sleep_n_3715937.html
Reduce intake of caffeinated beverages- Caffeine is a stimulate drug and a Northwest staple. It is also a crutch to college students during midterms and finals week. I was nine when I had my first coffee drink, and I don’t recall when my first caffeinated soda was. Studies show that no matter when caffeine is consumed it effects you sleep cycle (Woerner, 2013). That is right even a “cup of Joe” in the morning can impede sleep (Woerner, 2013) http://www.foxnews.com/health/2013/11/15/afternoon-caffeine-associated-with-significant-sleep-disruptions-study-shows/
Reduce alcohol intake- This suggestion surprised me because I find myself sleepy after having a glass of wine. It is common for me to hear a fellow student say, “I need to wind down” and opt for an adult beverage. Although alcohol is a depressant, therefore disturbs circadian rhythms and REM cycles (Szalavitz, 2013). This is one of the reasons why people whom have drunk the night before feel unrested after sleep (Szalavitz, 2013) http://healthland.time.com/2013/02/08/sleeping-it-off-how-alcohol-affects-sleep-quality/.
Exercise- Physicians have discouraged vigorous exercise before bedtime for years (Painter, 2013). Recent evidence and studies from The 2013 Sleep in America Poll proves otherwise (Painter, 2013). USA Today reports that people that exercise before sleep slept better then those who didn’t exercise at all. No matter what time of the day it was (Painter, 2013). http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/03/04/sleep-survey-exercise-insomnia/1955117/
Bed is for sleep only… Ok maybe one more thing- Sleep specialists...