Did you know that sleep is as vital for your health as are diet and exercise? Considering that humans spend one-third of their lives sleeping, you want to make sure that you schedule the hours of sleep you need every single day to stay on top of your game. Making your sleep health a priority is a game changer, which can vastly improve your life.
First things first; give yourself a consistent amount of sleep as much as possible. According to the National Sleep Foundation, teens typically do best with 8-10 hours of sleep, young adults and adults with 7-9 hours of sleep, while older adults do well on 7-8 hours a night. Humans do tend to thrive with routines, so it should come as no surprise that having a bedtime sleep routine can make all the difference. In fact, your body performs its best when following a bedtime ritual and getting up at around the same time consistently every day.
The room you sleep in should optimize comfort and relaxation. Cool temperatures, a quiet ambiance, a comfortable bed and pillow all play a factor in sleeping like a baby. If you like to read, watch TV, text or email before bed, set those activities aside early enough so your mind can unwind and readily fall asleep.
If you face health challenges because of a common sleep disorder such as sleep apnea, you will likely require additional help getting the quality sleep your body needs. This disorder involves the blockage or constriction of the airways that keep your lungs from getting sufficient oxygen. Thankfully, there are a variety of treatments that can help.
Natural Sleep Aids for Sleep Apnea
Some natural aids for helping with sleep apnea can include losing weight, quitting smoking and drinking (alcohol relaxes your throat muscles and worsen your sleep apnea symptoms), avoiding caffeine and energy drinks after 3:00 p.m., sleeping on your side instead of your back to keep your airway open, and having your hormones and neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, evaluated. You can also try wearing an oral device that moves the jaw into a position, which minimizes obstruction of the airway and relieves snoring.
Sleep Apnea Treatment
Sleep apnea is often treated successfully using a continuous positive airway pressure machine or CPAP. You wear a mask over your nose and breathe in pressurized air, which helps keep the airways open. There are a variety of CPAP masks and machines, so if you have any issues adjusting to one, you can try out several others to find the best fit for you.
Sleep apnea can also be treated using surgery. One surgery for sleep apnea is removing the tissue – and often the tonsils that may be obstructing your breathing – by enlarging your airway.
As you can see, a good night’s sleep is not to be taken lightly, as poor sleep can have long-term health consequences. If you have trouble sleeping, consider seeing our sleep specialist, so they can determine if you can benefit from sleep apnea treatment. A good night’s sleep is critical for optimal health!