“We are not healthy unless our sleep is healthy. And we cannot make our sleep healthy unless we become thoroughly aware of both its peril and its promise”
- Rest and Repair: Throughout the day, body has to divert all its energy for all the physical, mental & physiological activities.It is only during sleep that the body gets the time & opportunity to rest and divert its energy towards repairing its own tissues and relaxing the mind.
- Detoxification: All the toxins are supposed to & must be removed from the body on a day to day basis. If not, it accumulates and results in diseases. Liver is the primary organ that helps in detoxification. Detoxification happens only during sleep. Sleep is the only time which allows our Liver to work towards detoxification.
- Healing: Sleep is the best healer. Sound sleep in terms of quantity & quality aids healing and recovery.
- Treatment efficacy: Sleep improves the effectiveness of any treatment you are going through as the energies are completely directed towards healing.
- Vitality and immunity: Sound sleep always improves and invigorates vitality. If sleep is disturbed, one always feels lethargic but when sleep is sound, it invigorates us. Sleep also improves the immunity of a person thereby manages infections and inflammation.
- De-stress: Stress and hormonal imbalance is interlinked to each other. When the sleep is sound, the mind de-stresses & calms down, hormones are regulated which in turn brings about a homeostatic harmony between body, breath & mind.
- Mental health: Sleep not only improves physical health but also very important to bring about a balanced and sound mental health. Sound sleep leads to clarity in the thoughts and helps in sound decision making. It also calms down the mind, improves brain cell (neurons) function and improves cognition (concentration, memory and processing speed) thereby shaping a better personality of the individual personally and professionally. It also improves neuro-plasticity in our brain, a phenomenon which bring about new neural connections along with adaptation to our various stimulus and demands of the day.
What deteriorates the quality of sleep?
- Excessive usage of Mobile/ TV/Laptop screen-The eyes are strained by the screen light of TV/ Mobile/ Laptop especially when the room lights are switched off before sleeping. Excessive use of the gadgets will not let the brain to relax and may lead to headaches and refractory errors.
- Recreational drugs- Use of recreational drugs & drinks, viz. Alcohol, Tea, and Coffee etc when consumed excessively will deteriorate the quality of sleep by stimulating our nervous system and not allowing us to relax. The effect of these habits adds on every day and further deteriorates our health.
- Heavy meals/ Oily foods- Intake of heavy meals, excessive calories, oily fried food, excessive sugars and bakery foods should be avoided especially during dinners. Intake of such foods close to sleeping hours will divert the energy towards digestion and assimilation; thereby the process of repair and detoxification is compromised
- Mental stress- Usually majority of the people brood over their tensions and worries while going to or while sleeping on the bed. This increase in stress just before sleeping delays the onset of sleep and also disturbs the sleep throughout the night.
What should you do before Sleeping?
- Relax your mind: Always try and organize your thoughts before sleeping rather than sleeping with random and too many thoughts. Reduce your brain’s over activity with any kind of stimulus as the day is ending.
- Yogic techniques like breathing exercises, yoga nidra, yogic relaxation techniques, light and lively talks with family, comedy shows on TV will aid you to relax your mind.
- Healthy meal: Light and healthy meal is essential. Make sure to give a gap of 2-3 hours between your supper / dinner and bedtime; so that sleep & digestion are not impacting each other.
Complications of unhealthy sleeping habits
- Deteriorates energy
- Digestion is hampered leading to bacterial overgrowth in the digestive track leading to indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome, acidity and gastric ulcers.
- Leads to hormonal imbalances causing endocrine disorders like hypothyroidism, PCOS, Diabetes, acne etc.
- Metabolic disorders like Obesity.
- Cardiovascular health is affected leading towards hypertension, cardiac arrest etc
- Mental health is affected leading to anxiety, irritability, mood fluctuations, confusions, lack of decision making, memory loss and attention deficiency.
- Reduces the body’s immunity making one vulnerable to infections