In today’s 24/7 world, people find it harder to log off than to doze off. Between responding to someone’s Facebook post, checking your mentions on Twitter or taking the ever-so-present “I’m bored” selfie, it takes twice as long for your brain and body to prepare for sleep, so much so 41 percent of Americans suffer from a lack of sleep.
Dr. Ian Smith shared some of his insight on sleep, “I talk about sleep all the time, but no one pays attention. People unfortunately don’t make a connection to how much sleep they get and how productive they are at work. The body is a great machines, but can break down like anything else.” Dr. Smith spoke to the attendees and offered practical advice to help improve one’s sleep pattern:
1. Turn off all electronic devices 30 minutes before going to bed.
2. Devoid your bedroom of all clutter and make sure your bedroom is a calm, clean part of the house and isn’t your family room.
3. Wash your sheets. Dr. Smith suggests people wash their sheets every six days instead of the average two weeks.
Smith said a good night sleep varies from person to person and recommends and average of six to eight hours a night is the ideal amount. Smith also warned that putting off a good night sleep might not negatively impact you right away, but the long term effects can be deadly.
“Its almost like sun damage. Sun damage is a slow process. It doesn’t hit you instantly, you don’t get cancer right away, the cumulative effects of poor sleep hygene can lead to all sorts of problems including Type 2 Diabetes, being overweight and hormonal disruption,” Smith said.
So you mean to tell me all I have to do is turn off my electronics, wash my sheets and get in the bed and my waistline can be snatched!? Oh you didn’t say nothing but a word! On it!