“Of all the things a man may do, sleep probably contributes most to keeping him sane. It puts brackets about each day.”
Please Help Me Sleep🙏
Do you have trouble sleeping at night? You’re not alone. Millions of people suffer from insomnia every year. Increasing numbers of people contact me with their struggle to get a good night sleep and while I am not surprised by this, it definitely causes me concern.
Sleep is a complicated thing that affects all parts of the body. Different parts of the brain work together to produce hormones and chemicals that control sleep and wakefulness.
Sleep is important for physical, emotional, and mental health.
With this article I hope to show you the benefits of a good, night’s sleep and how you can achieve it.
It is important to first understand a bit about sleep.
Stages of Sleep Cycle 🧮️
Sleep is mainly formed of four stages consisting of both Rapid Eye Movement (REM) and non-rapid eye movement (NREM), these are also known as N1 (Stage1), N2 (Stage 2), N3 (Stage 3) and R (REM). N1 to N3 have considered non-eye movement sleep.
Stage 3 sleep is the deepest sleep stage. It is characterised by a much slower frequency with high amplitude signals known as delta waves.
REM sleep is when you dream. Your brain is active like when you are awake, but your muscles are very relaxed. The only muscles that stay active are the ones that control your eyes and breathing. Your breathing might be more irregular during REM sleep.
In stage 1, you are just starting to sleep and your brain and body are slowing down. It is easier to be awoken during this stage.
How much sleep do you need? 🔢
Most people need around eight hours of sleep a day.
While it is normal to think and focus on the number of hours of sleep one can get into their 24 hour day, it is critical to think about the sleep quality as well and whether the time spent sleeping is restorative.
It is generally recognised that between 7 and 9 hours of sleep per night is enough for most adults.
Teenagers, babies and young children need more sleep than adults to help them grow and develop.
Several studies suggest that the body’s ability to function declines if one is deprived of a good night sleep over a long period of time.
Why Is Sleep So Important? 🤷
Sleep is not only critical for physical and mental health but is fundamental to our overall wellbeing.
People who do not get enough sleep are more likely to have health problems like heart disease, a weak immune system, obesity, type II diabetes, and mental health problems like depression and anxiety.
How Meditation Can Help You Sleep 🤔
Instead of focusing on falling asleep, meditation makes your goal to relax your body and mind.
Meditations can be listened to when you are lying in bed in preparation to sleep and followed up by a sleep story.
Making little changes around your sleep hygiene and using meditation techniques to relax can dramatically improve sleep quality.
Meditation helps bring about a relaxed state of mind that is conducive to falling asleep. The state of acceptance and awareness invoked by meditation helps reduce psychological distress, helps manage anger, worry, anxiety and depression thus supplying the mental resources to calm down the nervous system in preparation for sleep.
How Mindful You Can Help You Sleep Better 😴
Mindful You has specific meditations designed to prepare your mind for sleep, along with sleep stories and sleep sounds.
We offer a Free 7 Day Trial so you can try introducing meditation in to you sleep routine.
I hope that this article has given you a brief look at the benefits of sleep, and more importantly inspired you to take action to get the sleep you need. Goodnight!