Do struggle to get a good night's rest? Do you have difficulty falling asleep; or do you find yourself waking up repeatedly throughout the night? Is it hard to get out of bed in the morning, because you feel tired instead of feeling refreshed and energized?
During the period when you're asleep, all of the systems in your body undergo a process of rest, repair, and rejuvenation. Optimal physical and mental health depends on adequate sleep and dreaming. If you're tossing and turning all night, you're missing out on the restorative and protective aspects of sleep; both your physical and mental well-being are compromised as a result.
It doesn't take long for your body to feel the effects of poor quality sleep. After just a few days, inadequate sleep leads to:
Beyond quantity, the actual quality of your sleep matters. Adequate time spent in the REM (rapid eye movement) sleep state is important, as this is the stage of sleep where dreaming tends to occur. About 25% of your total sleep time is REM sleep, much of this occurring towards the last half of the night. In research experiments where study participants were deprived of the chance to dream by having their REM sleep interrupted, they developed bizarre behaviours and even psychotic symptoms.
The problem with sleeping pills.
If you're struggling with sleep issues such as insomnia, sleeping pills might seem like a quick and easy solution to the problem. But there are numerous risks involved with resorting to sleep medications, even prescription medications. Prolonged drowsiness, memory problems, dizziness and headaches are just some of the side effects that some people experience when taking sleeping pills. Sleep aids can interact with other medications, and there's also the risk of becoming dependent on the pills.
Sleeping pills may help you to get a decent night's rest in the short term. Ultimately, however, they fail to address the root cause of your sleep problems.
While it might take longer and require more work, investing the time to get to the root of your sleep issues is worth it. If you're able to resolve your sleep issues naturally, without the use of prescription or non-prescription sleep medication, you'll benefit in the long term as you'll be working with your body's biology, rather than disrupting it.
Natural ways to improve the quality of your sleep.
Here are some natural ways to improve the quality of your sleep:
Your diet can either support or detract from a good night's rest, so be mindful of what you eat in the hours before bed:
If you've been struggling to consistently get quality sleep, start taking steps to turn things around. You'll be amazed at how much better you feel physically and mentally when your body finally starts getting the quality, restorative rest it needs.
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