Improving Your Sleep Habits



Have you been having a problem obtaining a restful night of sleep? What helps a person get a good night’s sleep? The reader has to understand that sleep has cycles, and not allowing these to occur at night results in poor or inadequate rest. This article will examine methods we can use to help us sleep.


Doctors are continually asked what should be done. There are numerous advertisements for sleep aids, old wives tales and home remedies which have been touted as the answer to sleep. None of these are satisfactory to maintain good sleeping habits for care of your neck and back pain. Let’s examine some reasons for this sleep deprived epidemic.


Signs of Inadequate Sleep


This list includes many signs and symptoms of poor sleep:
  • Slow reactions – danger driving or working

  • Memory loss – this is temporary due to the sleep deprivation, but this could result in difficulty taking examinations for the student or the executive in the business setting.

  • Headaches, aches and pains – People complain that on some days they don’t feel well and “ache all over” can be a side effect of deficient sleep.

  • Decision making and short attention span – For those in critical situations with the need to be attentive, poor or inadequate sleep could cause harm or bring undesired results.


Long Term Signs and Results of Poor Sleep


There is danger for the person who has chronic insomnia. The literature has documented the association with the following conditions:
  • Diabetes Risk
  • Hypertension
  • Depression
  • Cancer
  • Obesity
Summary of problems caused by poor or
inadequate sleep includes the following:
  • Compromised Immunity
  • Alerted Appetite
  • Altered Metabolism
  • Higher Blood Pressure
  • Slow Reaction Times
  • Increased Accident Rate
  • More Sensitive to Pain
  • Stimulant Seeking
  • Decrease in Human Growth Hormone Production

What are some Benefits of Getting Good Sleep

  • Increased tissue healing
  • Improved recovery rates
  • Pain modulation
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Weight control
  • Memory improvement
  • Stronger immune response

What Should Be Done to get a Good Night’s Sleep?


There are a number of factors that contribute to poor or inadequate sleep. The American population as a whole does not make sleep a priority. We are fooling ourselves by saying “I can get by on 5 hours of sleep”. It is important that we get enough sleep and make it a priority. At the turn of the 20th century, Americans averaged 9.5 hours of sleep. At the start of the 21st century we have graduated to just under 7 hours of sleep per night on the average. The ideal standard is 8 hours.


Americans do not keep a regular schedule of sleep. We should be on a 7 day a week schedule of going to bed and getting up. Have you ever wondered why Monday morning you wake up and have the “Monday Blues”? Over the week-end most people stay up a few hours longer than during the work week and get up a hour or two later the next morning. But Sunday night they try to go back to their 5 day a week schedule. Your circadian rhythm has been altered much like jet lag. Monday mornings can be difficult.


Napping is helpful but not for more than 30 minutes, then get up and continue your days activities. The next time frame for the most restful nap is around 90 minutes. Your sleep cycle is to your benefit to be up in 30 minutes after a “cat nap”. If you are woken up in an hour, your sleep cycle is in Delta sleep and your are not as refreshed as you would be with the “cat nap”. It takes awhile to get to the point you don’t feel tired from your hour nap. The same scenario occurs with the 90 minute nap, it’s a natural point in the cycle for you to wake up, otherwise same feeling as after an hour nap occurs and a longer sleep may adversely affect you night’s sleep routine.


The doctors at Coon Rapids Chiropractic Office have experience in offering advice and recommendations to help improve your sleep habits. Call today for your appointment. (763)-755-4300


Remember to make sleep a priority and keep a regular schedule for going to bed and getting up in the morning. Finally, follow the suggestions for napping and you will be more refreshed and alert.


The International Academy of Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine