May is Better Sleep Month
The objective of Better Sleep Month
Encouraging healthy lives through better sleep. Refreshing sleep is just as important as diet and exercise in maintaining your health. Poor sleep, in contrast, can lead to increased blood pressure, stress, irritability, concentration problems and a weakened immune system.
Establishing Better Sleep Patterns
• Maintain a consistent sleep schedule - even on the weekends
• Relax prior to sleep with relaxing activities like reading, and limit stimulating ones.
• Proper diet and exercise support better sleep
• Avoid alcohol, nicotine and caffeine close to bed time.
• Take control of your sleeping environment. Dark, quiet and comfortable surroundings are important, as is your bedding quality and space. Remember to remove distractions in the bed- room.
How Much Sleep is Needed
The quality of sleep is a very important factor. Six hours of deep refreshing sleep is more beneficial than eight hours of light interrupted sleep. Many experts suggest 7.5 to 8.5 hours is optimal.
Achieving Better Sleep
When conditions such as sleep apnea or snoring interrupt sleep, your dentist can typically be of great help. Custom molded mouth pieces called Jaw Advancing Devices (JAD) work well to treat both sleep apnea and are effective to stop snoring. Lifestyle changes are sometimes needed to change poor sleeping habits. Counseling can be effective in reducing stress and supporting these changes. Better Sleep Month is supported by the Better Sleep Council. Reference for this article can be found at WhatHealth.com (Better Sleep Month 2017).