Various factors affect the sleep we get either as a child or an adult. Most times people overlook some of the most obvious reasons as to why they cannot sleep. Yet, the balance of the sleep-wake system is influenced a lot by internal and external factors. Although you may have a sleep pattern these factors will affect it most of the time. Due to this, you get less sleep of poor quality that is often fragmented if there is no shift to better options. If this is not corrected the cycle continues and eventually it affects your health and your sleep depth as well. Here are some factors that influence the quality and quantity of the sleep you get.
The sleep environment
The aura in your bedroom is important that it portrays a calm and relaxing environment. It consists of everything in it from the bed, metro mattress, noise, scents, lighting among others. The lighting and temperature of this environment are the main influencers of the sleep you get. Ensure that you know what puts you at ease and keep off what can disrupt your sleep. Any source of light at night affects restful sleep regardless of its source. There is an ideal temperature for every individual depending on where they live. Ensure the temperatures feel comfortable and do not disrupt sleep. Otherwise, those that sleep with their spouse. It may affect their sleep a lot depending on how often they wake at night. If they have a snoring problem the noise is disruptive. It is therefore important to help them seek treatment to improve the sleep environment for both of you.
Do you travel across time zones or your job demands you to work through different shifts? The exposure to light due to this shift of times during day and night is not doing justice to your sleep. Since light sets our internal clock and when its timing is disrupted it causes various problems. For instance, pilots, hostesses and long-distance travelers experience jetlag. Since their internal clock has not yet adjusted to the day-night cycle of where they are going. Hence those who fall into this category of shift work and various time zones. Experience excessive sleepiness and insomnia for their bodies’ internal clock signals the opposite. Some of these professions that are affected by having various shifts are some important jobs that help serve people in the society. For instance, air traffic controllers, nurses, airline pilots among many others.
Alcohol and sleep do not work well together. As much as most people use it as a sleep aid and take a bottle or two thinking that it will lull them into sleep. The truth stands that the sleep that one gets under the influence of alcohol compromises its quality. The arousal effect that alcohol has as it metabolizes later in the night causes increased awakenings. Plus of course insomnia in most late night alcohol drinkers is experienced. Those suffering from sleep disorders such as sleep apnea worsen the symptoms. Hence their sleep is disrupted eventually leading to poor quality and quantity of sleep.
Medical and psychological conditions
These conditions influence the quality and quantity of sleep an individual gets. This is because there is a way that sleep is structured and distributed for it to sync with our bodies. Therefore, any sort of pain, anxiety and other medical conditions will harm how well you sleep. This results in frequent night awakenings and a lot of fragmented sleep to the affected person. Some of these conditions are arthritis, premenstrual syndrome and many others. Whether it is daily life stresses or a major stressful issue the mind gets more alert and awake and getting your beauty rest becomes a challenge. [READ: Top Health and Beauty Benefits of Omega-3 DHA | Zenith Nutrition]
The Light effect
The internal clock can advance and delay depending on how your bodies are exposed to light. This affects the sleep cycle making light one of the common external factors that affect sleep. The many electronic devices that are in people’s houses. Have taken people’s attention and also their sleep due to the light they are exposed to at night. From the mobile phones to the TV sets lights they have all affected people’s sleep patterns. Electronic light exposure delays the phase of our biological clock making your body prefer to sleep at a later time. This disrupts any sleep routine in place and it can lead to other unpredictable effects that are not reversible.
Caffeine is found in several products from a cup of coffee to energy drinks. It promotes alertness and inhibits you from getting the needed beauty rest. The stimulants effects affect the patterns of sleep especially when taken at night. The number of awakenings tends to increase and the more the effects prolong is dependent on how much caffeine you get. Therefore, taking this at night with a lot of previous sleep debt. It causes more harm than good to your system for it will lead to poor quality of sleep. Also, you wake up exhausted affecting your days’ productivity. Alcohol and foods high in sugar have a similar effect causing you to get up moody and tired all the time.
As much as prescription medication helps a lot in treating and controlling symptoms of various diseases. Most of them have varying effects on the sleep quality and quantity you get. They are in groups of alpha-blockers, beta-blockers, and antidepressants. All these decrease the amount of REM sleep that one should get as side effects. The alpha-blockers that treat high blood pressure and other conditions also increase daytime sleepiness. While the beta-blockers that treat migraines, heart failure and other diseases cause the same effect. The anti-depressants effects are worse for their effect on sleep and promote insomnia with long term effects. This prescription drugs once you can get off them the better. However, you can ask your doctor how to best get better sleep with prescriptions that affect sleep negatively.