An Adult needs between seven and nine hours of nightly sleep
Benefits Of Sleep
Research shows that getting enough quality sleep at all times is vital for mental, physical health, and quality life, as well as safety.
Sleep keeps us growing. It offers us the chance to recover from wear and tear of daily life. Sleep allows the brain and body to slow down and engage in the process of recovery, promoting better physical, mental and emotional performance the next day and over the long term.
Sleep is also good for healing process, weight maintenance, insulin function, and proper heart functioning.
Sleep Deprivation /Deficiency
Sleep deprivation and deficiency occur when you don’t get enough quality sleep that your body needs. Sleep deficiency occurs if you do not get enough sleep because you sleep at the wrong time of the day, or you do not sleep well.
Work schedules, day – to -day stressors, a disruptive bedroom environment and some medical conditions can prevent us from receiving enough sleep.
Consequences Of Lack Of Sleep
For most adults, at least seven hours of nightly sleep is needed for cognitive and behavioral functions, An insufficient amount of sleep can have serious repercussions.
Some studies have shown that; Sleep deprivation leaves people vulnerable to attention lapse, reduced cognition, delayed reaction and mood shifts.
People who regularly get fewer than six hours of sleep are at higher risk of diabetes, heart disease, stroke, cognitive decline from any cause. Other potential problems include obesity, depression, impermanent of immunity and low sex drive.
Chronic sleep deprivation can even affect your appearance. Evident among them are ageing skin, fine lines, wrinkles and puffiness under the eyes.
You may stand the risk of injury and accidents at home, work place, on the road, if you can’t sleep. A lack of restful sleep also makes it more likely that a person will gain weight and have higher levels of stress hormone cortisol, says Dr. Manson.
Simple Steps To Sleep
Sleep therapists suggest that adults who do not receive sufficient amount of sleep each night can implement some positive life style and sleep habits in order to log the seven to nine hours.
They include the following. Establish a realistic bedtime schedules and stick to it every night even on week-ends.
Maintain comfortable temperature settings and low light levels in your bedroom.
Consider “screen ban” on TVs, Computers, and tablets, cell phones and other electronic devices in your bedroom.
Abstain from caffeine, alcohol and large meals in the hours leading to bed time.
Refrain from using tobacco at any time of the day or night Exercise during the day. This can wind down in the evening to prepare you for sleep.
Reach out for a healthy diet made up of grains, protein, fruits, vegetables, virgin olive oils instead of junk foods.
Sleep will continue to elude you if you feed the brain and body with poor diet.
Sleep is an absolute necessity for human existence.
If you often feel tired when waking up or have trouble staying up throughout the day, or if your partner notices that your snoring is louder and your breathing stops for a shorter period during the night you may have obstructive sleep apnea. A visit to a sleep specialist can get you on the road to an effective treatment.
Again, you may be exercising everyday but do not see any difference in your waist. Please see your doctor for examination to determine the cause.
Self – Examination Assessment
Dear Reader, supposing the Creator of rhythms of sleep should send his angels into your community to –night, to identify individuals who are having good nightly asleep, in order to reward them with extra twenty years to their divine ages, will you be part of the awardees? Exactly in what state are they likely to find you? Still Whatsapping? About to eat your last meal? Drinking and watching films on the television? or sitting behind the computer with encyclopedia scattered around you?
Information has it that some chief executive officers hardly sleep for two hours at night because they almost always have some dead line to meet the next day.
From a casual observation, it appears most Ghanaians are suffering from either sleep deprivation or sleep deficiency or even both, this writer, not excluded.
Judging from the important roles sleep plays in our over – all health –wellbeing, it should be necessary for us to put the right measures in place in order that we can enjoy at least seven hours’ nightly sleep daily. This will help prevent us from contracting diseases such as diabetes, stroke, heart attack, cognitive decline, depression as well as premature ageing.
The essence of a good nightly sleep is that it helps us to live healthily, while enjoying longevity.
By Eno Afua Sarpong Kumankamaah, former Head of Unit, Public Relations, GES Headquarters Accra