Unfortunately, more and more people are sleep-deprived and lack the needed rest and sleep their body craves for.
According to Jillian Levy, CHHC:
“The broad definition of sleep deprivation is “the condition that occurs if you don’t get enough sleep.” The amount of sleep that qualifies as “enough” differs depending on who you ask.
But it usually falls between about 7–9 hours per night for adults (and even more for children and teens). However, everyone is a bit different in terms of their ideal amount of sleep. Some need more like 6–10 hours of sleep per night to feel their best. Or, others simply need an extra couple hours of rest on occasion when feeling extra run down.
According to recent research done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), between 7–19 percent of adults in the United States report regularly lacking sleep or not getting enough rest almost daily.
And many more than this struggle with occasional sleep-related disorders or problems including sleep apnea, anxiety or night time pain that interferes with their overall quality of life.”
Undoubtedly, sleep is crucial for our physical and mental health, so its lack can lead to numerous serious health problems. Despite contributing to weight gain, bad mood, and impaired productivity and decision-making skills, sleeping less than 6 hours per night just once a week has been scientifically shown to lead to changes in our immune system, inflammation in the body, and our stress response.
However, Dr. Andrew Weil claims that we can easily solve this issue and fall asleep almost instantly with the help of a relaxing breathing exercise that calms the mind in prepares the body for sleep.
It is known as the 4-7-8 breathing technique, and here are the instructions:
- Lie in a position in which you are able to breathe deeply.
- Place the tip of your tongue on the roof of the mouth behind the front teeth.
- Exhale completely
- Inhale through your nose to a count of 4.
- Hold the breath for a count of 7.
- Breathe out through the mouth to a count of 8.
- Repeat three times.
With practice, this method is a potent sleep aid, even though it might make you feel a bit light-headed at first. It is also useful in times of stress and anxiety. It slows the breath, fills the body with oxygen, and helps the body to relax in order to enter a state of sleep.
While many claim that this breathing technique will help you fall asleep quickly, there are other things you can do to help you prepare for and honor your sleep. It is all about setting the expectation by giving your body notice that sleep is coming so it can physically prepare for it.
Additionally, follow these tips to easily fall asleep at night:
- Write down your worries before going to sleep, and your brain will get a message that it can let go those thoughts since they are taken care of
- Turn off all the digital devices around you
- Eliminate all sources of noise from the bedroom
- Turn down the thermostat, as people sleep better in a cooler room.
- Create a healthy sleeping pattern that your body will get used to, so go to bed and wake up at the same time every day
Do your best to give your body the deserved rest in order to reenergize and calm the mind. In this way, you will drastically improve your health, as well as the quality of your day-to-day life.