The Importance of Quality Sleep and How It Can Improve Your Health
Never underestimate the positive effects that a good, quality night’s sleep has for your health. Not only can it leave you feeling refreshed and ready to take on the new day, but it is a vital time in which your body undergoes a lot of healing and helps to repair ailments that you may not have even known you had.
There are thousands of studies that have been conducted through the years that closer examines the true health benefits that sleeping has for us. And on the flip side, there is an equal amount of studies that have proven how devastating sleep deprivation can be for our mind and bodies.
If you are somebody who tends to take time away from your sleeping schedule to find more time to socialize or stay up late watching TV, you may want to reconsider your agenda. When you stop and think about a single day being 24 hours long, you should be spending roughly 1/3 of it asleep.
If that note does not force you think about how much sleep you are truly getting, consider this: The average person will spend around 26 years of their life sleeping (about 227,760 hours).
Now that we have your attention, allow us to break down a few of the vital health functions that getting consistent quality sleep can help improve.
Sleep Will Allow Your Body to Undergo Repairs
Damage to your body is not always visible, and it goes much further than what you may notice throughout the day. Getting a full night of quality and restful sleep will help your body to repair damages from many things including stress, inflammation, and ultraviolet rays.
When you are asleep, the cells in your body are able to increase their production of protein. It is within these proteins that the building blocks of cells are created, thus allowing the ability to repair damage done to the body.
Sleep Will Help Reduce Stress
As you would expect, your body is normally much more relaxed when you are asleep as compared to being awake. And when you deny your body the sleep that you need, it puts more pressure on your mental functions and can cause an increased blood pressure that will ultimately only make it harder to fall and stay asleep.
When you are able to get on a good sleeping routine, your mind is able to “refresh,” giving you clearer thoughts and an improved ability to make decisions. This mental reset is vital for your mental health and reducing your overall stress levels.
Sleep Can Help Improve Your Memory
Even though many believe that sleeping is a good way to “shut off” your brain for a while, the exact opposite is actually happening.
When you are asleep, your mind is rapidly processing your entire day. This includes all your sights, smells, feelings, memories and so on that occurred that day.
During the third stage of the sleep cycle is when you are in the deepest sleep. It is during this time that your brain truly bridges together different memories and associations, helping to improve your memory.
When you enter the fourth stage of sleep, also known as rapid eye movement, or REM, you begin to experience dreams. You will probably notice that many dreams you have will hold some significance to your daily life, even if some events or characters in the dream are not completely accurate. This is normal and is just another way that your brain works to connect memories.
Sleep Helps to Improve Your Immune System
If there is one good reason on this list to get the recommended amount of sleep, it is this.
When you deprive your body of sleep you begin to impair your immune system, making it tougher to fight off basic colds and infections. This can result in longer recovery time and more sick days being used at the office.
Even worse, a lack of sleep can make it much more difficult to recover from the flu, which kills over 50,000 people each year. In the event of something major, a pandemic perhaps, it is vital that you are getting enough rest and keeping your immune system at its strongest. While this may not affect as many adults, it is crucial for both young children and the elderly to get plenty of rest in order to prevent their immune system from losing its functionality.
How Can You Improve Your Quality of Sleep?
Now that you know a few of the health benefits that accommodate a consistent schedule of quality sleep, you may be asking yourself how you can actually improve on your sleep. There are many answers to this question, but we want to focus on the one thing that we feel plays the most vital role in your sleep quality: choosing the right mattress.
Many of you may not have known that your mattress can play such a huge role in your sleep quality, but the proof is in the pudding. Choosing the correct mattress is an important step to leading a healthier and more restful life.
So how do you go about choosing the correct mattress? Here is a simple breakdown:
- Your mattress needs to compliment you and your sleeping style. If you enjoy a lot of room, make sure you are buying a mattress big enough to accommodate you. If too much extra space makes it difficult for you to fall asleep, then go with something a little smaller.
- Much like with the size, you need to choose the correct firmness level that compliments your sleeping style as well. This decision can be altered by several factors, including: the position you most often sleep in, if certain areas of your body are more sensitive than others, and your overall preference between firm and soft.
- Once you know what size and firmness level you need your mattress to be, it is time to figure out which features you want. Most of the time, a company will list these features directly on their site. Mattress can include several different features, including temperature-regulating material, memory foam, breathable mesh, and many others.
When it comes to buying the best mattress, it never hurts to do a little research first. Just remember that your mattress should fit your sleeping style and should never be handed down to you. Sleeping on a used mattress can come with several negative results, including aches and pains and an inability to stay asleep.
When life gets busy, one day seems to blur into the next. And although our busy schedules can force us to make compromises at times, it is crucial that you do not short yourself on sleep, especially during these unprecedented times where a healthy immune system is worth more now than ever before.
Choose the best mattress for you, find yourself a good sleeping schedule, and keep yourself as happy and healthy as you possibly can.