Spring Forward to Better Sleep

I absolutely love spring.

What’s not to like?  Days become longer and warmer so you can spend more time with your family and loved ones.

It also means the start of daylight savings, rolling forward the clock and subsequently losing one precious hour of sleep. Adjusting to the lost hour of sleep in spring is harder than adjusting to the gained hour of sleep in the fall. If you are a person who has to drag yourself out of bed, this adjustment in time makes this process even more difficult, particularly if you are sleep-deprived.

The importance of sleep and its role in restoration, cannot be emphasized enough. If we look at shift workers, who epitomize irregular sleep patterns at the extreme, we see increased rates of cancer, cardiovascular diseases, digestive issues, irregular menstrual cycles, difficulty shedding weight, depressed moods, occupational injuries, decreased mental acuity, daytime sleepiness, impaired judgement etc.

24 hours without sleep is roughly equivalent to consuming enough alcohol to be considered legally drunk!

Not sure if you are sleep-deprived? A good question to ask yourself is do you wake up in the morning feeling rested?

Some tips for you to help improve your quality of sleep:
– Get to bed at a regular time each night, before midnight.
– Sleep in complete darkness.
– Keep the bedroom only for sleep so your mind associates it with sleep alone.
– Get exposure to ample amounts of sunlight to help entrain your circadian rhythms (biological clock).

Contrary to what they tell you, ordering a venti Cafe Americano from Starbucks or grabbing a Red Bull (or another energy drink) from your local convenience store is not an adequate substitute for quality sleep.

If you don’t snooze, you lose.

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