My Mom Was Right.
Updated: May 14, 2020
The importance of practicing healthy sleep habits.
I've had sleep trouble for as long as I could remember to the point where I've given up on trying to fix my bad (but helpless) habits. Even before this whole pandemic mess, I usually only get about 3-6 hours (on a good day), and sometimes pull up to almost two all-nighters a week. The more I read about the effects of sleep on the brain, the more desperate I am to do something about this terrible habit. I am tired (lol) of the lack of sleep affecting my mental health and the way I live my life. My anxiety has gotten to an all-time high, and I haven't been in the best place, and of course, the world going through a clusterf*ck of a situation (new favorite word sorry mom, it's perfect really) does not help my case. After a lot of research, I found out the obvious: Sleep is the cure-all (kind of).
Let's get medical (medical ♫)
According to Dr. Daniel Amen, America's Sweetheart, as well as a double board-certified psychiatrist, professor, and brain health expert, healthy sleep is essential to a brain healthy life. Getting proper sleep is a chance for your body to rejuvenate all the cells in your body, washes away toxins that build up during the day, and gives your brain cells a chance to repair themselves. When you don't get enough sleep, you have overall decreased blood flow to your brain, which disrupts thinking, memory, and concentration.
Here are some tips that are proven to improve your sleep <3
1. Stick to a consistent sleep schedule (going to bed and waking up at the same time). 2. Don't drink alcohol before bed. 3. Increase your bright light during the day. 4. Make your bedroom a happy and relaxing environment. 5. Take a hot steamy shower before bed. 6. Add a quick meditation session to your bedtime routine and take some time to breathe. 7. Get off your phone 30 minutes before bed.
I've realized now more than ever that I need to make sleep my number one priority because of how detrimental the lack thereof has been on my overall health. These small changes in my night routine have helped immensely when it comes to winding down and creating a relaxing night routine for myself. I still have my struggles, but I'm slowly getting there, and I hope you do too! Sweet Dreaming <3
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