Did you know that humans are the only mammals that deprive themselves of sleep? Lack of sleep has become an accepted part of our everyday experience, but serious health issues are associated with not getting the recommended hours of sleep, and an extra cup coffee is not sufficient to offset the symptoms and risks. Fatigue, depression, anxiety, lowered immune system, impaired memory, and poor brain function are some of the symptoms associated with sleep deprivation.
Sleep is the body’s chance to recover from the day. Your body goes through five stages of sleep that serve different purposes. After the four stages, you hit the critical sleep stage of Rapid Eye Movement (REM) which is critical to provide energy to the brain and body. If the body does not get a chance to recover, it remains in a state of chronic stress. This chronic state increases the risk of disease development such as heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.
What are the best sleep habits to improve sleep quality?
- Keep a regular bedtime on weeknights and weekends.
- Avoid excessive alcohol, caffeine, nicotine, and sugar before bedtime.
- Stay away from screens and bright lights before bed.
- Sleep in a quiet, dark room.
- Exercise during the day.
Valley Schools knows that sleep is a priority and provides resources and tools for our members to address this often overlooked wellness component.
For more information about Valley Schools or our Wellness Program, please visit our website.