Consider the Alternative
Exploring the avenues of non-traditional therapies
(page 3 of 7)
Sleep is the elusive goal of our hectic modern lives. Everyone wants it, and no one can get enough. With new research revealing sleep’s prime importance to a healthy life and a strong immune system, the pressure is on to get some rest.
Sleep takes up one-third of our life, and it’s not just the advised eight hours that’s important. Sleep scientists have discovered that quality is as important as quantity.
At the Sun Valley Sleep Center, Doctor Kim Vorse said that we must all cycle through every sleep stage uninterrupted. Cycles that are fragmented in any way (by snoring, blocked nasal passages or pain) can substantially affect our health, beyond the obvious fatigue and irritability. Incomplete sleep can result in reduced immune function, depression, high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity.
WHAT CAN WE DO?
The Sun Valley Sleep Center’s Sleep Hygiene Tips:
Follow a regimen
- Keep a consistent bed and wake schedule, even on weekends.
Plan a bedtime routine—whether it’s a cup of herbal tea (chamomile, catnip, anise or fennel are good) or reading, find habits to slow down and ease into sleep. White noise machines help lull some. (Check www.simplynoise.com for a great online noise source.)
- Create a proper sleep atmosphere
Keep a dark, quiet, cool, clean and comfortable room (and a sleep mask if necessary).
- Avoid stimulants such as TV, computer or work materials.
No pets or plants—dander and mold can interrupt breathing.
No hot baths right before bed—body temperature needs to be cool to sleep.
- Avoid emotional stress
Bedtime is not the time to discuss emotional issues. Don’t avoid problems, but set a time earlier in the day for heavy discussions.
- The Mattress Matters
Have a medium-firm mattress replaced every seven years or so.
- Replace humidifiers with a HEPA filter
Humidifiers can cause mold, but a HEPA (High Efficiency Particulate Air) filter cleans the air of dust, dead cells, pet dander and other allergens. >>>