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Sleep hygiene: what it is and how to promote it

Sleep hygiene: what it is and how to promote it

The human being has basic needs, which when satisfied allow us to develop all our daily activities; within which we find: food, breathing, sex, health and rest. Within the latter we find something that many speak and not all know, the sleep hygiene.

Next we will talk in depth about what sleep hygiene is and what we can do to promote it, and thus improve our physical and mental health.

What is sleep hygiene?

Initially it should be noted that the dream It is something fundamental for a person to have an adequate and optimal performance in their daily lives, For this reason, it should be promoted to be a quality dream, that is, restorative and favorable to our health.

With this in mind, Sleep hygiene refers to the whole set of factors, whether behavioral, environmental, that are immediately before bedtime. and that they can exert some influence on it.

For example: noise, lighting, sleeping position, among others. This will allow that through certain recommendations the habit of sleep is improved, making it a repairing activity of the organism, which prevents sleep disorders.

Sadly today due to distracting factors such as television or smartphone, sleep is seriously affected, so much so that the WHO (World Health Organization) expresses that disorders such as insomnia are on the rise in people of different ages. Hence the importance of consulting with a specialist when this basic need for sleep is affected. Therefore, we will talk about some useful and simple tips or recommendations to promote sleep hygiene.

5 Tips to improve sleep hygiene

Identify what is happening to you ...

No one knows you better than yourself, so when you start having trouble sleeping it is essential that you do an exhaustive analysis of what is happening: it is the product of a pharmacological treatment and / or illness, for excess stress, etc.

Before sleep…

There are certain environmental factors that you should prepare before sleeping, so that internally and externally, everything is arranged to facilitate rest. These are: Do not use any technological device (tablet, cell phone, notebook) just before bedtime because this causes the brain to remain active, avoid using substances such as coffee, alcohol and tobacco (minimum 3 hours before), have your last meal of the day two hours before, keep a space free of light and noise (as far as possible), put on comfortable clothes (pajamas or loose clothing) and after eating brush your teeth . All this prepares both physically and psychologically a person for bedtime.

Watch out for naps ...

It is recommended avoid napping, but if at any time during the day you feel tired take a nap no longer than 30 minutes, in a way that does not affect the reconciliation of sleep at night. Here it is necessary to make a clarification, preferably that you do it after eating but not so late, that is, if you just ate (or have lunch as they say in some countries) you can do it without problem, but if it is already 6 in the afternoon better Wait until night to sleep.

Do physical activity ...

The number of days you exercise depends on you, at least one hour. Preferably in the morning hours, if at the end of the day it is at least 3 hours before bedtime (this will allow you to sleep due to physical fatigue from exercise), this will allow you to acquire good sleep hygiene.

Have fixed schedules ...

Both getting up and going to bed is important to have an established routine, that is, establish according to your activities (work or on weekends) so that the number of sleeping hours per day is a minimum of 6 and a maximum of 8 hours. There are people who say they sleep 3 hours, 12 hours and look good; It is not a matter of caprice, but some studies have shown that 6-8 hours of sleep a day It is the amount needed to be a restful sleep both physically and mentally. Having this clear can avoid serious health problems in the medium or long term.

In conclusion…

It is important that we promote healthy sleep hygiene habits, remember that rest is evidenced in how we perform both simple and complex activities, regardless if you are a child or an adult we all need sleep and do it well. Remember that ... The idea is to prevent and not have to regret!

It may interest you: Biological rhythms and the sleep-wake cycle

Bibliography

  • (1) Wikipedia (2018). Sleep Hygiene Extracted from: //es.wikipedia.org/wiki/Higiene_del_sueño
  • (2) Lared21 (2015). WHO: World Sleep Day under the slogan "If sleep is restful, health abounds." Extracted from: //www.lr21.com.uy/salud/1221492-oms-dia-mundial-del-sueno-2015
  • (3) Guiasalud (s. F.). Sleep hygiene, format for the patient. Extracted from: //www.guiasalud.es/egpc/insomnio/completa/documentos/anexos/anex9b.pdf
  • (4) Adamedtv (2018). Sleep hygiene: the habits we must take care of for optimal rest. Extracted from: //www.adamedtv.com/salud-mental/higiene-del-sueno-los-habitos-que-debemos-cuidar-para-un-descanso-optimo/