Regulate your sleep cycle – Know the do’s and don’ts!
Do you feel sleepy at odd hours? You are not alone! Sleep is an essential part of our daily routine which shouldn’t be compromised. While children between the ages of 5-12 requires a minimum of 10-11 hours of sleep, adolescents and adults are required to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep to be energized and refreshed throughout the day.
Recent research indicates that on any given day, one out of five adults suffer from sleep deprivation. As one grows older, this just becomes a regular pattern or a habit that may cause chronic sleep disorders. Hence, it is important to develop good sleeping habits in the initial stages.
Specifically, in Dubai, lack of sleep is a serious concern as doctors suggest that almost 90% of the UAE’s population suffer from sleep deprivation. Moreover, it is found out that only 46.42% of UAE’s population sleep for seven hours. While the rest manage to get an average of 4-5 hours.
Though many people think Insomnia as a condition where one suffers complete lack of sleep, it comprises of several intricate sleep problems. Some of them include –
- Difficulty in falling asleep
- Frequently waking up in the night, breaking the sleep cycle
- Fatigue even after sleeping
- Early morning awakening
Often you might hear someone brag that they function completely normal even after sleeping for only 4-5 hours. While it is amusing to see their positive take on lack of sleep, on a longer run, this will definitely take a toll on their overall health. One of the most common long-term effects is the lack of defense mechanism when a body is subjected to harmful viruses and bacteria. The immune system will gradually lose the ability to fight diseases and microorganisms leading to falling ill frequently.
Some of the common symptoms of insomnia or other sleep disorders are:
- Daytime sleepiness or irritation, causing fatigue
- Drastic weight-gain or weight-loss
- Immune system weakness making one more susceptible to getting ill
- Elevated blood pressure levels, increasing the risks of diabetes and chronic heart diseases
- Severe body pain
- Any mental illness – anxiety or depression
While the cause, symptoms and effects are analyzed, it is only valid to give a list of do’s and don’ts that can help regulate your sleep cycle without any form of medication or invasive treatment.
- Try adopting a regular sleep schedule and continue for 21 days non-stop
- Exercise for at least 30 minutes every day, preferably yoga or basic floor exercises.
- Take a warm shower before snoozing for the day
- Tun your clock around so that you do not look at it, first thing in the morning
- Keep a ‘thought journal’ which could be handy when you feel stressed or anxious. This will help in evaluating a pattern of your thought process.
- Do not consume caffeine after noon. This includes beverages like coffee, tea, soda, energy drinks etc.
- Do not take stimulants before bedtime such as chocolate, nicotine or other medications
- Do not watch TV or spend long hours on the phone before sleeping as these activities stimulate your brain keeping you awake for a long period of time.
- Do not fall into the urge to napping in the afternoon
- Do not eat heavy or large portion meals before bedtime
These could be some simple ways by which your sleep cycle could be normalized. However, if you have already tried these tips, our brain training experts at Evolve Brain Training Center will guide in regulating your sleep cycle by identifying and treating the root cause. We use the latest NASA patented EEG neurofeedback therapy that will help your brain evolve and break the long-term patterns that have caused it to develop bad sleeping habits.
Dr. Upasana Gala is the founder and CEO of Evolve Brain Training, a Neurofeedback centered institute that focuses on using non-invasive brain training techniques to maximize the brain's true potential.