20 Tips To Fall Asleep Faster And Enjoy Better SleepPopular on CamTrader
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Do you know that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) classifies the lack of sleep in the United States as an epidemic? (Source) A pandemic is a disease that has spread rapidly within a given population in a short period. This is not surprising if you consider that one in three adult Americans reports not getting sufficient sleep (Source).
Even though no single factor has been attributed to many Americans’ sleeping challenges, researchers have found insomnia, exacerbated by constant exposure to significant amounts of stress, to be a significant contributing factor (Source). A 2019 survey by the American Psychiatric Association reported that many Americans experience higher stress levels than average (Source).
While the insights above may appear bleak, sleeping challenges can be solved. In this article, we discuss why sleep is essential for the mind, body, and health. We will also try to identify the factors that can make sleeping faster and better, more difficult. Lastly, the article provides 20 tips that can help you fall asleep faster and enjoy better sleep.
Importance of Healthy Sleep
In an article published by the US National Library of Medicine, Susan Worley writes that “studies are strengthening known and suspected relationships between inadequate sleep and a wide range of disorders, including hypertension, obesity and type-2 diabetes, impaired immune functioning, cardiovascular disease and arrhythmias, mood disorders, neurodegeneration and dementia, and even loneliness” (Source).
Worley continues to note that no matter how busy our lives can get, “we can no longer afford to ignore what research is telling us about the importance of sleep for our safety, and mental and physical wellbeing” (Source).
Let’s look at some of the benefits of healthy sleep to our brains, bodies, and general health.
Researchers have discovered that sleep correlates with three essential brain functions: concentration, cognition, and productivity (Source). The impact of sleep on these brain functions is documented in a Norwegian study that showed links between sleep patterns and academic performance in primary school-aged children.
Adequate sleep has also been found to boost an individual’s mood as the brain tends to process emotions better while you sleep (Source). In a paper published by the Journal of Sleep Research, Veronica Guadagni, Ford Burles, Michele Ferrara, and Giuseppe Laria conclude that adequate sleep improves mood and makes individuals have more emotional empathy. Emotional empathy denotes the ability to feel the emotions of others.
Sufficient sleep is also linked to preventing depression. Studies suggest that a lack of sleep is a contributing factor to suicide. People with insomnia are more likely to be depressed (Source).
When it comes to sleep and weight gain, results from research are generally inconclusive. However, those studies that conclude that lack of sleep may lead to weight gain argue that inadequate sleep may impact an individual’s willingness to maintain a healthy lifestyle (Source).
A study published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America suggests that not getting enough sleep affects the balance of leptin and ghrelin in the brain, which are the hormones that regulate appetite. It concludes that as individuals remain awake, they tend to eat more than they need as “a physiological adaptation to provide the energy needed to sustain additional wakefulness” (Source).
Although the recommended daily amount of sleep for the average adult is 7 to 9 hours, athletes are advised to sleep for as much as 10 hours a night (Source). The National Sleep Foundation highlights four reasons for this recommendation, saying that more sleep means athletes would be faster, it would boost their intensity, improve their mental strength, and increase their co-ordination.
According to the CDC, “Adults who sleep less than 7 hours each night are more likely to say they have had health problems, including a heart attack, asthma, and depression.” It adds that “some of these health problems raise the risk for heart disease, heart attack, and stroke” (Source).
A study published by the World Journal of Gastroenterology states that “individuals with sleep abnormalities are also at greater risk of serious adverse health, economic consequences, and, most importantly, increased all-cause mortality.” The same study also notes that research supports the view that there is a link between sleep problems and inflammation and immune function (Source).
What the above studies show is that adequate sleep is not just nice to have, it is an essential part of a fully functional human being.
Things That Make It Difficult to Sleep Faster and Better
While many people occasionally have periods when they have difficulty going to sleep, if this happens to you at least three nights a week for three months, it may indicate a sleep disorder like insomnia (Source). Before presenting some tips to alleviate your sleep-related problems, let’s look at some of the causes of sleep-related challenges.
The American Sleep Association identifies five factors that make falling asleep difficult. These are stress, caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, and sleep disorders (Source). These factors have varying effects on sleep patterns but can, in most cases, be managed by following recommended sleeping practices. You will realize that most of the tips below are linked to these five causes.
Tips to Fall Asleep Faster and Enjoy Better Sleep
Suppose you wonder how you can easily pay up your sleep debts and avoid falling into a sleep deficit. In that case, we recommend that you try the following 20 methods: