After a long day that consists of waking up early, working full time, and taking care of the kids and home, I’m thoroughly exhausted. All I want to do is crawl into bed and wake up rested in the morning. I am someone who is very scheduled in all aspects of my life including eating meals, exercising and especially with my sleeping habits. I go to bed about the same time every night. My sleep routine never includes watching tv from bed. I usually get between 7 and 8 hours of sleep every night. But for some of you out there, and you know who you are, you fight sleep every step of the way.
More than just waking up feeling rested, getting adequate amounts of sleep is extremely beneficial to our overall health. Although the amount of sleep that one needs varies between age groups and individuals, if you feel drowsy during the day, you are probably not getting enough sleep. Below is a list of ways that sleep can benefit us; and it may just make you hit the hay earlier.
- Live longer- Getting too much sleep or too little sleep can have a direct impact on our lifespan
- Improve Memory- sleep can help strengthen memory skills
- Ward off inflammation- Inflammation is linked to many health issues including heart disease, stroke, diabetes, arthritis and pre-mature aging
- Ignite creativity- sleep helps to spark creativity
- Winning – studies show that athletes who get plenty of sleep (at least 10 hours), perform better
- Improve grades- research has shown that there is a link between adequate amounts of sleep and better grades
- Improve attention- lack of sleep has been reported to be associated with ADHD like symptoms
- Burn Fat- people that are more rested appear to lose more fat than people who don’t get enough sleep
- Lower Stress- people who get enough sleep have lower stress levels
- Improve Cardiovascular Health- sleep can have a positive effect on blood pressure levels and cholesterol levels
- Safer Driving- according to the NHTSA, sleep deprivation “ accounted for the highest number of fatal single-car run-off-the-road crashes due to the driver’s performance”
- Can help to ward of depression – although lack of sleep can not cause depression, if you have am existing medical condition or have personal problems, lack of sleep can make your depression worse
For those of you who think that it’s no big deal if you skimp on sleep, think again. You may be opening yourself up to a slew of physical and emotional issues. So make a conscious decision to go to bed earlier and get a better night’s sleep; your health could depend on it.