Why is Sleep so Important and How to Get a Better Night’s Rest

Everyone has heard how important sleep is. Did you know we all require a different amount of sleep each night? Adults generally need between 7 and 9 hours of sleep but some only need as few as 6 and others as much as 10 hour of sleep each night. Infants require 14-15 hours of sleep a day and teenagers need about 8.5 to 9.5 hours of sleep per night.  We know we need a lot of sleep but why is it so important?

The way you feel while you’re awake depends in part on what happens while you’re sleeping. During sleep, your body is working to support healthy brain function and maintain your physical health. In children and teens, sleep also helps support growth and development. Here are a few reasons why sleep is so important.

Better health

Many studies have shown a link between insufficient sleep and some serious health problems, such as heart disease, heart attacks, diabetes, and obesity. One study simulated the effects of the disturbed sleep patterns of shift workers on 10 young healthy adults. After a only four days, three of them had blood glucose levels that qualified as pre-diabetic.

Less pain

If you have a condition that causes chronic pain, getting enough sleep will actually help you hurt less.

Lower risk of injury

Sleep deprivation has been linked with many disasters, like the destruction of the space shuttle Challenger and the grounding of the Exxon Valdez. The Institute of Medicine estimates that one out of five auto accidents in the U.S. results from drowsy driving, that’s about 1 million crashes a year!

Better mood

You have probably noticed that when you don’t get enough sleep, you can become rather cranky. Getting a great nights sleep doesn’t mean you wont experience a bad day and get moody, but getting a full nights rest helps regulate your emotions.

Better weight control

Getting enough sleep can help you maintain your weight and sleep loss has been linked to weight gain. If you’re overtired, you are less likely to have the energy to go for that jog or cook a healthier dinner after a long work day. The hormone leptin plays a key role in making you feel full. When you don’t get enough sleep, leptin levels drop.

Clearer thinking
Sleep affects how you think. Sleep loss impairs your attention and decision-making. Studies have found that people who are sleep-deprived are considerably worse at solving logic or math problems than when they’re well rested.

Now that we know a few of the reasons why sleep is so important, here are a few tips to help you get a better night’s sleep:

  • Set a regular bedtime.
  • Wake up at the same time every day.
  • Nap to make up for lost sleep.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Get comfortable and keep a cozy sleep environment.

If you are experiencing pain or discomfort at night that is preventing you from having a peaceful night’s sleep, Performance Rehabilitation and Integrated Medicine can help. We offer services such as include Interventional Pain Management, Physical Therapy, Chiropractic Care, Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine, and Massage Therapy.

Contact us at 908-756-2424 for an appointment to learn more.