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Getting A Restful Night Sleep

The amount of sleep we get a night affects everything we do in our waking hours. From our personality, our way of thinking, and our ability to function at our work place. Even more dangerous is the way we drive. Being behind a wheel of a car when we are sleep deprived can be very hazardous to not only your own life but also the lives of others. 

What causes a person not to get a restful night sleep? Many factors could be causing you to lack the sleep that you so desperately need. Insomnia is a disorder that affects the initiating and maintaining sleep. Many adults suffer from insomnia and might not even know it. If you fall asleep rather quickly but awaken after only a few hours sleep you could be suffering from insomnia. 

First determine the amount of sleep that you need:
Toddlers need eleven hours of sleep every night, plus a two-hour nap during the day.
Pre-school age children need eleven to twelve hours of sleep a night.
School-age children need ten hours of sleep each night.
Teens need nine hours and twenty-five minutes of sleep every night. Most get less than eight and one half hours.
Adults need about eight hours of sleep every night. To determine exactly how much sleep you need, take a night you feel fairly rested; sleep until you wake up on your own. Feel rested? The length of the time you slept is how much you need.

The amount of sleep we actually need is the amount that makes us feel well. Too much or too little makes a person irritable and tired. Some adults need ten hours while others only need 4.

Try the following suggestions on getting better nights sleep. 

  • Sleep as much as you need to feel refreshed and healthy the following day but not more. Extremely long times in bed seems to be related to shallow sleep.
  • Try to get up at about the same time every morning, regardless of when you went to bed the night before. This helps establish a sleep/wake rhythm of cycle and will eventually help you feel sleepy at the same time each night.
  • Exercise the same amount each day, preferably in the late afternoon or early evening. Sporadic exercise does not necessarily improve sleep the following night. Too much activity late in the evening can motivate your body and make it difficult to relax for sleep.
  • Make sure your bedroom is quiet and dark. Frequent loud noises can disturb sleep even in people who are not awakened by the noise or cannot remember them in the morning.
  • Keep the temperature comfortable.
  • Dont go to bed until you feel sleepy. If its bedtime but youre not tired, do something to relax until you feel sleepy.
  • A light snack may help sleep.
  • Avoid napping. If you feel a nap is necessary sleep no more than 20 minutes.
  • Avoid caffeine and alcohol in the evening.
  • Dont smoke.
  • Dont rehash todays problems or worry about tomorrow.
  • If you cant sleep go to another room, and do something relaxing, like reading.

If you occasionally have trouble falling asleep at night, there are some dietary factors that may be the problem. A big meal or a meal high in protein in the evening, eating too late at night (you should not have anything to eat after 7:00pm) or consuming caffeine or alcohol, can interfere greatly with sleep.

Try these good sleep techniques and see if they help you. Knowing that you are at risk of hurting another person should be enough for you to change various things in your life to improve on a better sleep habit. You will improve your ability it make clear decisions. 

Stress is another cause of insomnia. To reduce stress levels take a thirty-minute walk to clear your way of thinking. Exercise is a great stress buster. 

Have a great and restful sleep!

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