Having problems sleeping? Hypnotherapy is a wonderful tool.
Lack of sleep can be the result of worry, fears, stress, diet, lack of exercise, exercising too late, hormonal, badly functioning brain wave patterns, environmental and several other factors. Contact your MD first to rule out any physical problems.
About 70 million Americans suffer from a sleep problem;
among them, nearly 60 percent have a chronic disorder.
Sleep problems affect men and women of every age,
race, and socioeconomic class. Despite this widespspread
prevalence, most cases remain undiagnosed and untreated.
Each year, sleep disorders, sleep deprivation, and
sleepiness add an estimated$15.9 billion to the national
health care bill. Other costs to society include lost worker
productivity and accidents. It has never been quantified as to the contribution of sleep disorders to such
serious problems as heart disease and stroke, which kill and debilitate thousands each year.
About 25 percent of American children aged 1 to 5 have a sleep disturbance.
An estimated 250,000 people suffer from narcolepsy.
More that 50 percent of Americans aged 65 and older have a sleep problem.
Disturbed sleep is most frequently cited by caretakers for institutionalization of older Americans.
The adult pattern of sleep cycles, each approximately 90 min long, progressing in depth through stages 1-4 and followed by a period of rapid eye movement (REM), is established early in childhood, usually by the age of 12 months. As is the case in adults, deep or slow wave sleep consisting of stages 3 and 4 is a relatively predominant in the first half of sleep and REM duration is longer during the last half.
Sleep deprivation has measurable negative effects on performance and physical and mental health. If you haven’t had a good night’s sleep, you’re likely to pay for it. The price may be high: Reduced energy, greater difficulty concentrating, diminished mood, and greater risk for accidents, including fall-asleep crashes. Work performance and relationships can suffer too. And pain may be intensified by the physical and mental consequences of lack of sleep.
There is no question that your health is affected by a lack of sleep. It is a chicken and egg syndrome. A number of conditions may influence or coexist with insomnia; which include psychiatric or medical disorders, as well as life events such as menopause and trauma.
Although the jury is still out as to the primary reason we need sleep the following things are scientifically proven:
Sleep gives the body a chance to repair muscles and other tissues, replace aging or dead cells, and secret chemicals important to the immune system.
Sleep gives the brain a chance to organize and archive memories. Dreams are thought by some to be part of this process. When the brain is tired, it secretes a hormone which alerts the organism that it has been burning up its energy reserves and needs to shut down for awhile.
Sleep lowers our energy consumption, so we need three meals a day rather that four or five. Since we can’t do anything in the dark anyway, we might as well turn off and save the energy
With a good night’s sleep, everything looks and feels better in the morning. Both the brain and the.body are refreshed and ready for a new day.
1) Sleep is a time when your body and brain shut down for rest and relaxation.
2) If you regularly doze off unintentionally during the day, you may need more than just a good night’s sleep.
3) If you snore loudly and persistently at night and are sleepy during the day, you may have a sleep disorder.
4) Opening the car window or turning the radio up will keep the drowsy driver awake.
5) Narcolepsy is a sleep disorder marked by “sleep attacks.”
6) The primary cause of insomnia is worry.
7) One cause of not getting enough sleep is restless legs syndrome.
8) The body has a natural ability to adjust to different sleep schedules such as working different shifts or traveling through multiple time zones quickly.
9) People need less sleep as they grow older.
10) More people doze off at the wheel of a car in the early morning or midafternoon than in the evening.
ANSWERS TO THE SLEEP I.Q. QUIZ
1 FALSE. Although it is a time when your body rests and restores its energy levels, sleep is an active state that affects both your physical and mental well-being. Adequate restful sleep, like diet and exercise, is critical to good health. Insufficient restful sleep can result in mental and physical health problems and possibly premature death.
2 TRUE. Many people doze off unintentionally during the day despite getting their usual night of sleep. This could be a sign of a sleep disorder. Approximately 40 million Americans suffer from sleep disorders, including sleep apnea, insomnia, narcolepsy, and restless legs syndrome. An untreated sleep disorder can reduce your daytime productivity, increase your risk of accidents, and put you at risk for illness and even early death.
3 TRUE. Persistent loud snoring at night and daytime sleepiness are the main symptoms of a common and serious sleep disorder, sleep apnea. Another symptom is frequent long pauses in breathing during sleep, followed by choking and gasping for breath. People with sleep apnea don’t get enough restful sleep, and their daytime performance is often seriously affected. Sleep apnea may also lead to hypertension, heart disease, heart attack, and stroke. However, it can be treated, and the sleep apnea patient can live a normal life.
4 FALSE. Opening the car window or turning the radio up may arouse a drowsy driver briefly, but this won’t keep that person alert behind the wheel. Even mild drowsiness is enough to reduce concentration and reaction time. The sleep-deprived driver may nod off for a couple of seconds at a time without even knowing it — enough time to kill himself or someone else. It has been estimated that drowsy driving may account for an average of 56,000 reported accidents each year — claiming over 1,500 lives.
5 TRUE. People with narcolepsy fall asleep uncontrollably — at any time of the day, in all types of situations — regardless of the amount or quality of sleep they’ve had the night before. Narcolepsy is characterized by these “sleep attacks,” as well as by daytime sleepiness, episodes of muscle weakness or paralysis, and disrupted nighttime sleep. Although there is no known cure, medications and behavioral treatments can control symptoms, and people with narcolepsy can live normal lives.
6 FALSE. Insomnia has many different causes, including physical and mental conditions and stress. Insomnia is the perception that you don’t get enough sleep because you can’t fall asleep or stay asleep or get back to sleep once you’ve awakened during the night. It affects people of all ages, usually for just an occasional night or two, but sometimes for weeks, months, or even years. Because insomnia can become a chronic problem, it is important to get it diagnosed and treated if it persists for more than a month.
7 TRUE. Restless legs syndrome (RLS) is a medical condition distinguished by tingling sensations in the legs — and sometimes the arms — while sitting or lying still, especially at bedtime. The person with RLS needs to constantly stretch or move the legs to try to relieve these uncomfortable or painful symptoms. As a result, he or she has difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep and usually feels extremely sleepy and unable to function fully during the day. Good sleep habits and medication can help the person with RLS.
8 FALSE. The human body’s biological clock programs each person to feel sleepy during the nighttime hours and to be active during the daylight hours. So people who work the night shift and try to sleep during the day are constantly fighting their biological clocks. This puts them at risk of error and accident at work and of disturbed sleep. The same is true for people who travel through multiple time zones quickly; they get “jet lag” because they cannot maintain a regular sleep-wake schedule. Sleeping during the day in a dark, quiet bedroom and getting exposure to sufficient bright light at the right time can help improve daytime alertness.
9 FALSE. As we get older, we don’t need less sleep, but we often get less sleep. That’s because our ability to sleep for long periods of time and to get into the deep restful stages of sleep decreases with age. Older people have more fragile sleep and are more easily disturbed by light, noise, and pain. They also may have medical conditions that contribute to sleep problems. Going to bed at the same time every night and getting up at the same time every morning, getting exposure to natural outdoor light during the day, and sleeping in a cool, dark, quiet place at night may help.
10 TRUE. Our bodies are programmed by our biological clock to experience two natural periods of sleepiness during the 24-hour day, regardless of the amount of sleep we’ve had in the previous 24 hours. The primary period is between about midnight and 7:00 a.m. A second period of less intense sleepiness is in the midafternoon, between about 1:00 and 3:00. This means that we are more at risk of falling asleep at the wheel at these times than in the evening — especially if we haven’t been getting enough sleep.
HOW MANY ANSWERS DID YOU GET CORRECT?
Congratulations! You know a lot about sleep. Share this information with your family and friends.
NATIONAL CENTER ON SLEEP DISORDERS RESEARCH
Prepared by National Institute of Health, National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.
If you are having difficulty sleeping here are some tips:
• Remove TV from bedroom, use bedroom only for sleeping.
• Avoid alcohol at bedtime
• Avoid sugar before bedtime, reduce in diet
• Avoid nicotine before bedtime
• Avoid caffeine before bedtime
• Avoid exercising before bedtime
• Make sure you are getting all the daily vitamins and minerals you need
• Get regular exercise weekly
• Do a simple stress relaxation exercise at bedtime
• Make sure you drink enough plain water during the day
Avoid watching violent or negative things on TV right at bedtime.
Do a self hypnosis exercise or listen to self hypnosis CD/tape.
Regular Health practitioner/MD visit to rule out anything else that may be keeping you awake.
Try to finish what you can of unfinished tasks during the day before you retire and then do a simple letting go exercise.
Make sure the temperature in your room is adequate for you so you won’t be awakened or kept awake by heat or cold.
If noise is a problem or you suspect a problem try using ear plugs.
Did you know sleep problems can be produced by an imbalance within your diet?
Foods that may affect sleep:
Alcohol, coffee, tea, sugar and colas.
Drink plenty of water during the day to flush toxins from your body. Do not drink liquids 2 hours prior to going to bed to avoid having to go to the bathroom at night.
Protein eaten by itself can keep you awake due to amino acids that stimulate your brain functions.
Spicy foods can stimulate your body systems and keep you awake all night. Avoid spicy foods after 6pm.
Greasy and Fatty foods
Most people feel tired after eating a heavy meal….but for a good sleep eating those kinds of foods is not recommended. They can slow you down temporarily, but also can cause gas and indigestion, which in itself can inhibit your sleep.
It’s best not to eat right before bedtime but if you must snack here are some tips:
Yogurt, crackers, cottage cheese
*Some people may be missing in certain vitamins, minerals, enzymes etc which can affect sleep
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Sandy Reid and Mitta V. Wise, Authors ©
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