Finally researchers agree on something! Sleep is the cornerstone of a healthy lifestyle. On average, Australians get 6.5 hours of sleep a night, but 12 per cent clock up 5.5 hours or less. The number of health issues caused by lack of sleep has risen by up to 10 per cent since 2010. A study published in the medical journal Sleep found that six hours or less of slumber could be just as bad as not sleeping at all.
Sleep plays a critical role in thinking and learning. Chronic sleep loss can put you at risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke and diabetes. Lack of sleep may lower sex drive and age your skin.
Sleep onset is not something we can control. Some people use medication yet ongoing use of sleeping pills may lead to dependence and interfere with developing good sleep habits thereby prolonging sleep difficulties.
Sleep hygiene is the term used to describe good sleep habits. Creating the right conditions for sleep, both in our minds and in our environment will aid in a good night’s rest. Reducing anxiety in your life will help you to get a peaceful sleep Read more tips here.
We spend on average a third of our lives in bed. So investing in a comfortable sleep space is essential to living a good life. Work towards that feeling of euphoria when climbing into your bed.
Bedgasms: a feeling of complete and utter euphoria which peaks when climbing into bed at the end of a long day.
You can enhance your bedgasm by incorporating some basic bedtime rituals into your current routine. These include aromatherapy, sleepy time teas, warm baths and if you’re feeling like indulging, get yourself a weighted blanket. Weighted blankets provide a calming experience by releasing serotonin and decreasing the activity in the nervous system.
A Study from Journal of Sleep Medicine & Disorders(2015) found that a weighted blanket helped those with insomnia sleep, simply because it helped them feel more settled before bed. When buying a weighted blanket, you need to buy it for your approximate weight. The experience of entering a bed and slipping away under soft silky sheets and a doona that, is not too heavy but not too light sends you off to dream world.
Develop your own rituals to remind your body that it is time to sleep. Relaxing stretches, breathing exercises, herbal teas, reading or aromatheraphy can help with releasing the anxiety of trying to sleep.
It takes a matter of seconds for aromas to enter the limbic system of the brain and influence your emotional and psychological being.
Choose an essential oil blend that makes you feel calm. Rose, lavender, ylang ylang and patchouli are favourites. Half an hour before you go to bed, use 4-6 drops of your chosen essential oil in a diffuser. Alternatively use aromatherapy roll-on perfumes before bed. If you are feeling really stuck, comment below and we can work together to find what’s best for you.
Children and Teenagers
A report found that sleep problems during childhood and as a teenager can lead to depression later in life. Sadly poor sleep is also associated with suicidal thoughts in teenagers so it’s critical we support young people to get the sleep they need. Research found a simple step like encouraging kids to put away their phones an hour before bed can lead to more sleep and a better quality sleep. Lead by example. Read a book together or place a drop of calming essential oil on their favourite teddy to help with a good night’s rest.