What is sleep?
Inactivity of the body, but electrical activity of the brain continues in a predictable pattern of brain waves – from slow wave sleep to brain states that mimic wakefulness in 90 minute cycles.
Refreshes memory / dreaming occurs
Stable sleep /diff to wake
Deep sleep, growth hormone released
Sleep restores learning, memory, temperament and regulates hormones.
Average adult needs 7 to 7 1/2 hours each night.
Lack of sleep is defined as frequent daytime sleepiness as a result of sleep deprivation daily for at least 3 months.
Lack of sleep can be unintentional or intentional.
- Circaid rhythm sleep-wake disorders
- Sleep-related breathing
- Parasomnias disorders
- Central disorder of hypersomnolence
- Other sleep disorders
Facts about sleep:
34% of US questioned stated less than 7hrs sleep nightly.
25% of US adults report lack of sleep 15 out of 30 days.
50-70 million US adults have sleep or wakefulness disorder.
Poor sleep is a public health concern!
Common causes of sleep disorders:
- Occupational worries
- Medical illness
- Family dynamics
- Financial worries
Health effects of insufficient sleep:
- Decreased immunological function
- Higher risk of chronic disease
- Higher cardiovascular death
- Higher risk of diabetes
- Higher risk of hypertension
- Higher risk of obesity
- Decreased mental performance
- Considerable higher risk in injury and accidents
Inadequate sleep is associated with behavior
- When sleep is inadequate to support sufficient alertness, work routine, and health from decreased total sleep time or fragmented sleep by short term awakenings.
- Lack of sleep syndrome is characterized by increased daytime sleepiness caused by shortened sleep daily for at least 3 months.
3 Most common sleep disorders:
- Insomnia- trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or waking up early 3 times week for 3 months and affects daily activity.
- Sleep Apnea- respiratory disturbance index > 15 per night with or without symptoms.
- Restless leg syndrome-painful legs causing overwhelming urges to move legs during inactivity
Quantity verses Quality:
- Quantity- hours of sleep per night.
- Quality – number of times awaken from sleep and percentage / duration and type of sleep stages entered REM verses NREM
How much sleep do we need?
- Sleep need is different for everyone and across the lifespan it changes.
- 6 to 8 hours is sufficient for most adults.
- Healthy people may feel refreshed with 6 to 10 hours.
Sleep intervention techniques:
- Sleep hygiene education
- Stimulus control
- Reducing sedentary rest
- Positioning for rest
- Weight control
- Progressive relaxation
- Cognitive behavior therapy
- Medication – antidepressants, ADHD meds, corticosteroids, thyroid hormone, high blood pressure meds, contraceptives, pain relievers containing caffeine, diuretics and diet pills
- Medical appliances
- Mindfulness sleep induction
Positive lifestyle changes to restore your sleep facilitates daily recovery and promotes improved health:
- Go to bed and get out of bed at the same time daily
- Avoid screen activity before bed
- Drink caffeinated drinks in in AM only
- Get out of bed if you cannot sleep after 20 min and return when sleepy
- Avoid alcohol
- Avoid smoking in PM
- Make your bedroom cozy, quite and cool
- Weight reduction if overweight
- Exercise on regular basis but not 2 hours before bedtime
- Eat a light snack (food with tryptophan)
- Use bed only for sleep and sex
- Avoid daytime napping
- Mouth exercise to stop snoring and improve sleep
- Weighted blanket
- Sleep temperature 67-69 degrees
Natural sleep remedies that do work need 4 essential ingredients:
5 essential herbs for sleep health
- Lemon balm
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#5 Somnis Natural sleep aid 2 out 5
Newest natural sleep aid
Sherri Boos, PT, DPT
Clark, D., Lein, D., & Morris, D. (2017, July 17). Integrating Sleep Health in Physical Therapy Clinical Practice.
Sleep Disorders & Problems – National Sleep Foundation. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://sleepfoundation.org/sleep-disorders-problems