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sleep problems

Tossing and turning every night? Us too.

The struggle to fall asleep has been haunting us lately and there isn’t enough coffee in the world to mend our sleepy heads in the morning.

All we want is a good night’s sleep. Is that too much to ask for?

If, like us, you have trouble falling asleep at night then fear not, because scientists have discovered quite the simple solution.

And it won’t cost you a penny!

One of the main things that keeps us up at night is our worried minds. We are constantly fretting about everything and anything, whether it’s an argument with our other half or fears of not being able to pay this month’s phone bill.

There’s always something on our mind that stops us from snoozing peacefully.

But there’s something you can do to ease this problem- write your thoughts down.

Healthy Ireland recommends penning your fears and worries on a piece of paper before your head hits the pillow.

It is simple but effective. Many people even use writing as a form of therapy.

Women struggle to sleep more than men (no surprise there) so why not keep a notebook or even a scrap of paper and a pen by your bed?

Then if your mind is abuzz with anxious thoughts, all you need to do is scribble them down and try to get them out of your system.

Have you tried this method before? Did it work for you?

We cannot wait to give it a go and look forward to catching some well-needed z’s.

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Sleep is honestly one of our favourite things.

However, now that we are adults, we have bid farewell to sleeping in until 10 am and taking a four-hour nap during the day to catch up on your night's sleep after hours of partying.

However, a new study has shown that if you're not sleeping well, it could be down to simply not drinking enough water.

 

Of course, not all sleep issues are linked to the lack of hydration and could be a sign of a more serious condition, and you should speak to your doctor if it persists.

But for the majority of us, scientists at Penn State University, Pennsylvania said that drinking more fluids could really help the quality of our sleep.

They studied 2,000 adults in China and the US and analysed their sleep and urine.

The study published in the journal, SLEEP, concluded that those who slept for six hours a night had significantly more concentrated urine and were more dehydrated.

 

Whereas those who regularly got the recommended amount of eight hours of shut-eye a night were more hydrated.

So if you want those two hours of extra sleep, it might be a good idea to drink some extra water.

The experts said that a hormone, vasopressin was linked to sleep quality and hydration.

"Vasopressin is released both more quickly and later on in the sleep cycle," said lead author, Asher Rosinger.

"So, if you're waking up earlier, you might miss that window in which more of the hormone is released, causing a disruption in the body's hydration."

"If you are only getting six hours of sleep a night, it can affect your hydration status," added the assistant professor at Penn State.

"This study suggests that if you're not getting enough sleep, and you feel bad or tired the next day, drink extra water."

So we will definitely be keeping a glass of water beside our bed.

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So, with long working hours and late weekends, you'll be hard pushed to find a 20-something that isn't dozing off during their Monday morning commute.

We're always searching for ways to get more shut-eye, yet we refuse to let our fast-paced lifestyles suffer.

Well, a new study may have uncovered the secret to getting a good night's sleep and it's all to do with the reasons you get up every morning.

Researchers asked participants to answer a 10-question survey on purpose in life and a 32-question survey on sleep and found that people who felt that had purpose were less likely to suffer from sleep-related problems over along period.

It should be noted that the study looked at the sleeping habits of older adults, however, researchers belive the findings are likely to apply to other age groups.

Lead scientist Dr Jason Ong, from Northwestern University in the US, said: ‘Helping people cultivate a purpose in life could be an effective drug-free strategy to improve sleep quality, particularly for a population that is facing more insomnia.”

"Purpose in life is something that can be cultivated and enhanced through mindfulness therapies."

The study of 823 adults found that those who felt they had a good reason to get up everyday were 63 per cent less likely to experience sleep apnoea and 52 per cent less likely to have restless le syndrome.

What's more, results showed that overall sleep quality was higher in those who were satisfied with their quality of life.

Researchers hope to follow on from this study with an investigation into whether or not improving perceived purpose in life through mindfulness therapy can lead to better sleep.

So, if you're finding it hard to get your eight hours, you might need to give up more than just those five cups of coffee you drink everyday. 

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Many of us are guilty of sleeping with our mobile phones within arm’s length at night time- you know, just in case someone texts at three o’clock in the morning.

However, experts suggest it is not actually good for us to sleep with our phones so close, as it causes hypervigilance – being constantly tense and on guard because you are waiting for your phone to ring. This causes sleep to become interrupted as we can’t relax properly and may also lead to insomnia and other problems.

According to sleep expert Dr Neil Stanley: “In order to get a good night’s sleep, you have to feel safe and not worried about anything. By having your phone close by at night, you’re subconsciously saying you wish to attend to that phone. The brain will monitor the situation and your sleep will be lighter and more likely to be disturbed.”

Insomnia specialist at The Sleep School in London, Dr Guy Meadows, leaves his phone outside his room and believes “people will sleep better if the bedroom is kept free of mobile phones and other electronic devices”.

Maybe it’s time to invest in an alarm clock and leave the mobile outside the bedroom.

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