The importance of sleeping well can’t be overstated; the impact it has on your health is huge. Tons of your body’s detoxing happens at night while the body rests.
Some fast facts:
- Humans spend a third of their life sleeping – this amounts to approx. 25 years
- Sleeping less than 7 hours per night reduces your life expectancy
- Lack of sleep can cause a 2lb weight gain in under a week
- More calories are burnt while sleeping than watching TV
- Most people can live up to 2 months without eating, but can only go 11 days without sleep
- People tend to sleep better during the new moon, and worse during the full moon
- Around 20% of sleep time is spent dreaming (adults)
- New parents lose approximately 6 months worth of sleep in their child’s first 2 years of life
A healthy sleep for most adults is just over 8 hours and it should only take you around 10 minutes to fall asleep.
Some common sleep disorders include insomnia, restless legs syndrome, sleep apnea, narcolepsy, sleep paralysis, snoring, exploding head syndrome (yes!), and sleep talking. These are all common, under diagnosed, and can be managed naturally.
There are multiple subtypes of insomnia, and it’s estimated that only 5% of people living with these have identified them. So, you may need to better support your sleep if it takes you longer than 30 minutes to fall asleep (initial insomnia), you wake up more than twice (mental insomnia), if you wake and cant fall back asleep (terminal insomnia), feel unrefreshed when you wake, you cant stay awake during the day (hypersomnia), you behave abnormally during sleep (parasomnia) and/or take sleep medications.
Other conditions that often cause sleep disruptions are thyroid disorders, estrogen dysregulation, chronic pain, lung and/or kidney deficiencies, acid reflux, and mental/emotional concerns (particularly anxiety disorders such as panic attacks and phobias). Alcohol, caffeine, chocolate, nicotine, plus a whole slew of prescription drugs (puffers, decongestants, etc.) are also known to prevent healthy sleep.
Check out my Sleep Hygiene tips; studies show that these healthy practices are equally as effective at improving sleep as prescription sleeping pills.