The understanding of us human beings that sleep is the decisive factor for our physical and mental health is constantly getting better. Because, more than 70 % of physical recovery depend on healthy sleep – and even 100 % of mental regeneration! Only during sleep, the powers of self-regulation, self-repairing and self-healing are activated. But, what does healthy sleep actually mean?
The facts are alarming: more than half of all grown-ups suffer under sleep disturbances, lack of sleep and no longer restful sleep. There are more than 100 different forms of sleep disturbances. They affect health, support diseases and block healing. But, how to find out whether the own sleep is good and healthy?
On an average, every grown-up should spend seven to nine hours with restful sleep. Every day. Here, the personal needs differ – the amount of sleep needed even depends on our genes. There are people, who need eight hours of sleep while others do perfect with just six to seven hours. Some people can easily change their sleeping plan or duration while others experience severe physical and mental problems when sleep is lacking.
Check your sleeping behavior
The best way to check your sleep and whether you have sufficient phases of deep– and REM-sleep would be a sleep screening. But, there are also other clear hints that reveal your sleeping quality. The following questions show, whether you are on the right track for healthy sleep. If you have to struggle with sleep disturbances or a non-restful sleep, a sleep-healthy-advice might be valuable.
- How much time do you need for falling asleep?
- How long do you sleep on an average?
- Do you often wake up at night longer than one or two minutes?
- How are you feeling in the morning? Fresh and full of energy?
- Are you freezing at night? Or, are you sweating at night above average?
- When getting up, are you having pain in the neck, back, muscles or joints?
- How are you getting through your day? Are you feeling wide awake?
- Are you snoring at night? Do you suffer under breathing stops?
The secret lies in restful sleep
From the scientific point of view, sufficient and restful sleep is the best and cost-efficient “anti-stress-remedy” there is. Furthermore, the best prevention from many civilization diseases like cancer, Alzheimer’s, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, hormonal disturbances and so on is healthy sleep. According to WHO, sleep disturbances and lack of sleep have serious effects on health and are classified as being “carcinogenic”. Our immune-system is weakened. This influences the regulation of more than 700 genes, especially the one’s responsible for immune-reactions, inflammations and stress reactions.
Effects and consequences of lack of sleep
Already in 2007, scientists of the University of Warwick have found out the effects of lack of sleep. More than 10,000 people were involved in this study. The scientists were able to prove that in the long run too few sleep doubles the infarction risk and so clearly shortens life expectancy. Furthermore, they determined that the brain detoxifies during sleep. And this detoxification is essential. So, in case you are not sleeping at least from seven to nine hours each night in long-term you are accepting degenerative damages of your brain.