This blog post accompanies the Evolve Experience Podcast Episode #2
Many people wish they were getting more sleep. These days, it can be harder than ever to fall asleep or stay asleep. What can you do to improve your sleep and get more rest? Here’s what you need to know:
Currently about 70 million Americans have difficulties with sleep! That’s about 20 percent of the population. A lot of people feel like they should be able to sleep after a long day of work, but it doesn’t always work out that way.
Unfortunately, chronic sleep deprivation can increase your risk of many health issues. Here are some things sleep issues may affect:
- Reduced immunity
- Memory problems—if you’re having trouble remembering things, or can’t recall something you just read a minute ago, lack of sleep may be a factor.
- Weight gain—a lot of people don’t realize this, but lack of sleep can make it harder to lose weight, even if you exercise and eat right.
- Skin problems
- Irritability—many people who aren’t sleeping well find they may be irritable, that they may snap at loved ones or people they work with.
- Low libido
- Hunger cravings
- Hormone Imbalance
So why is sleep such a big difficulty for so many Americans? It’s primarily a lifestyle issue. As our society changes rapidly, our bodies can’t keep up with some of these changes. Here are some examples:
- The lightbulb. People are photosensitive—we’re supposed to wake up when the sun comes up, then go to sleep a few hours after it goes down, about twelve hours. But with everything from lightbulbs to TV screens to computer screens to tablet or phone screens, we’re getting more like 16 or 17 hours a day of exposure to light, and that can affect our body’s ability to sense when it should sleep.
- Stress. This is a big one. Many people are constantly dealing with deadlines, running around trying to get things done, and this is very stressful. In America we have a very fast-paced lifestyle where we always feel rushed to get somewhere and do something. This is called a sympathetic driven neurology, and it’s inhibitory to sleep.
- 5G. We’re exposed to non-native EMF, or electromagnetic frequencies, daily. There is a lot of ongoing research in this area, but one thing we know is that these EMFs can inhibit the body’s production of melatonin, which is needed to get to sleep.
- Food. Eating too much before bed can also make it hard to get a good night’s sleep.
So, how do we get better sleep?
- Red light therapy can help sleep habits, and the best red light therapy system in the world is Joovv, which we offer at PWC.
- Try NuCalm. Another treatment option we offer, this is a binaural beat software you listen to for twenty minutes. It strengthens the neurology in your brain for parasympathetic dominance. This is helpful to do at least twenty minutes a day, three days a week.
- Track your sleep patterns. Try to figure out why you wake up, and how much you actually sleep. An aura ring is the best way, as a Fitbit is non-native EMF interference that may inhibit sleep.
- See sleep differently. Most people look at sleep as something you do at the end of the day. Think about it as the beginning of your day, the foundation. If you start with a good night’s sleep, you can build everything better on that foundation.
- The environment you sleep in. Your room needs to be your sanctuary. It should be calm, quiet, and so dark you can’t see your hand in front of your face. Even simple little things like a smartphone that lights up in the dark when you get an alert can interfere with sleep. The temperature of the room may also be an issue for some people.
- If you have a phone, put it in airplane mode when you go to bed.
- Unplug LEDs and unplug your router.
- Turn the thermostat down to about 65 degrees.
- You can also get blue light blocking glasses to filter blue light from electronic devices you use when awake.
- Don’t eat a big meal a few hours before bed.
- Core body temperature is very important for deep sleep. Taking a cold shower before bed may help.
- Ambient noise or music.
- Post Electoral Magnetic Frequency. Really good for lowering blood pressure and hormone regulation.
- Essential oils. A diffuser on your nightstand with rose, lavender, or other calming scents can help you relax for bed.
- Incandescent lights. This will give you calming light if you do wake up in the night.
- Get a mattress cooler so you and your partner can have different temperatures to sleep on if 65 degrees is too cool for them.
- Sleep masks and earplugs may help some people in noisy or heavily lit areas.
- Low blood sugar at night can cause you to keep waking up. Slow absorbing sugar sources like fruit may help with this.
- Make sure you get enough protein, which gets used to make neurotransmitters that can help with sleep regulation.
- Supplements—melatonin, .3-12mg before bed may help. Magnesium, 500mg a day is another good sleep supplement. Tryptophan, 1mg a day can help. Zinc, vitamin D, and vitamin K, are also good. We offer these at our practice as well.
- Exercise for 20 minutes before breakfast—a brisk walk, for example.
- Do heavier workouts before 6 PM so they don’t interfere with sleep.
- Grounding mats may help some people.
Try some of our wellness products and services to benefit sleep, for FREE!
Feeling a little overwhelmed by this list? Not sure where to start? It can be difficult to try many new things and balance out all the factors that contribute to sleep. We can help you get started by offering some of our wellness services free of charge on your first visit. Check out our Promos & Specials page for a FREE offer on NuCalm and Joovv.
Stay safe out there, everyone, and don’t forget – we are always offering valuable introduction packages and specials at one of our two locations in Port St. Lucie. Whether you are seeking chiropractic care for an injury or ongoing wellness, post-op physical therapy, relaxing massages, or innovative mind-body wellness services and products, you can get started with us for low introductory specials and rates. Click here to learn more!
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