Posted on Friday, January 22nd, 2021 at 10:11 pm
For many, the new year is a time to renew their personal promises of eating healthier, getting more sleep, and exercising more frequently. However, many people do not realize the myriad ways that diet, exercise, and sleep can affect each other. Scientists have discovered an intricate, highly symbiotic relationship between each of these factors of healthy living, and it is necessary to understand it in order to reap the ultimate benefits.
One of the most obvious benefits of healthy eating is that it fuels the body for exercise and staying energized throughout the day. It keeps our bodies in check by lowering our risk for heart disease, high blood pressure, and obesity, but it offers benefits for our mental health, as well.
According to the Sleep Foundation, healthy eating can help reduce the risk of developing anxiety and depression. Plus, fueling our bodies with the right foods to help us exercise regularly will reduce feelings of depression and hopelessness. Exercising releases endorphins, hormones that keep us feeling happy and motivated.
Being mindful of our diet also has an impact on our sleep habits. The Sleep Foundation suggests that eating too close to bedtime or consuming too many caffeinated beverages can hinder our ability to fall asleep. Additionally, if you do not have enough calcium, magnesium, and vitamins A, C, D, and E, you could have more trouble falling asleep at night.
A study from 2010 entitled “Exercise as a Treatment to Enhance Sleep” suggests that engaging in aerobic exercise or weightlifting can actually improve your quality of sleep. However, researchers found that exercising in the afternoon or early evening is the best option. Getting a workout in right before bedtime actually does more harm than good, hindering your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep. Some studies have even suggested that regular exercise can help to reduce the effects of sleep apnea in some patients.
Getting quality sleep each night gives our bodies the opportunity to heal and recover from the day’s activities and workouts. It also gives our brains a chance to temporarily take a break before the stimulation of the next day. People who do not get enough sleep tend to overeat and experience stress, anxiety, and depression more often. They are also at a higher risk of developing health issues such as obesity, high blood pressure, and stroke, according to the department of neurology at Columbia University.
Contact Silent Night Therapy
If you are not getting enough sleep and worry about how this could affect your health, don’t hesitate to reach out to Silent Night Therapy. Our sleep specialists are here to help. Call us at (631) 983-2463 or fill out a contact form online.
Posted on Monday, November 23rd, 2020 at 7:39 pm
If you have trouble falling asleep at night, chances are that you have tried a number of home remedies to solve this. If drinking chamomile tea, reading a book, turning off all of your electronics, and turning on the fan haven’t done the trick, you might consider some light stretching or exercises.
According to Healthline, one 2016 study found that people who practice yoga or tai chi before bed tend to sleep better. This is because these exercises get your mind in touch with your body instead of lingering on the stressors of the day. Practicing mindfulness has been shown to decrease overall stress, leading to a healthier lifestyle in general. And the first step to improving your quality of life is to improve the quality of your sleep.
Keep reading to learn more about which stretches are best to do before bed.
1. The bear hug
Healthline recommends this stretch because it works the muscles of the upper back, which often get strained throughout the day by sitting in a chair or having bad posture. To do this stretch, stand up tall and straight, and inhale as you stretch your arms open. As you exhale, bring your arms together, crossing over your body, giving yourself a hug. Use your hands to intentionally bring your shoulders forward to stretch the upper back muscles. Hold for 30 seconds and then release.
2. Child’s pose
The child’s pose is a great way to get in touch with your body and regulate your breathing. To do this stretch, simply get on your knees and lean back on your heels. Lean forward, keeping your legs tucked underneath your body and your arms outstretched. Stay in this pose for about five minutes.
3. Legs-up-the-wall pose
This pose is easy to do and helps release tension in your neck, back, and shoulders. Simply lay on your back and swing your legs up so that they are resting against the wall. You can adjust your distance from the wall depending on your comfort. Stay in this pose for about 10 minutes.
Make an Appointment With Silent Night Therapy
If you have tried every home remedy for getting a better night’s sleep but are still having trouble with your sleep habits, it might be time to call Silent Night Therapy. Our sleep specialists can help diagnose any sleep disorder you may have and find a solution that works for you. We can help treat sleep apnea, breathing problems, and snoring, among other concerns. Call us today at (631) 983-2463 to schedule your free consultation.
Posted on Tuesday, August 25th, 2020 at 12:26 am
Following a regular bedtime routine is one of the most beneficial things you can do for a good night’s sleep. You might take a shower, brush your teeth, and settle in with a good book before falling asleep. But did you know that some foods are better to eat before bedtime than others? Specialists say that eating certain foods before you go to sleep can improve your chances of getting a good night’s rest.
According to Healthline, there are nine foods and beverages that specialists have identified as the most beneficial to eat or drink before bed. They are:
- Chamomile tea
- Cherry juice
- Fatty fish
- White rice
- Passionflower tea
Some experts also believe that warm milk, bananas, cottage cheese, and yogurt help you get a good night’s sleep. Consuming these foods and beverages two to three hours before you go to sleep is recommended because it’s less likely to cause acid reflux or an upset stomach.
Many of the items listed above are good sources of melatonin, a hormone that regulates sleep, and serotonin, a chemical produced in the brain that regulates your sleep cycle. Cherry juice and almonds both contain high levels of melatonin, which in turn makes the person who consumes them sleepier sooner. Additionally, some research suggests that high amounts of magnesium in one’s diet can help promote sounder sleep. Walnuts, bananas, and almonds are all rich in magnesium.
Get Help at Silent Night Therapy
If you or your partner have difficulties falling asleep at night, this could be an indication of a more serious underlying health issue, such as sleep apnea or insomnia. Oftentimes, insomnia is caused by factors that are easy to address, but if you are suffering from sleep apnea, more rigorous treatment may be recommended. The specialists at Silent Night Therapy are here to help you through the process.
At Silent Night Therapy, our offices are now open. We understand that our clients are concerned about staying safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, and our staff has put in place comprehensive safety protocols to ensure the health of each of our clients. In addition, leaving the safety and comfort of your home is not required to see whether you have sleep apnea – we would be happy to mail an at-home kit right to your home. Contact us at (631) 983-2463 or fill out a contact form on our website today to learn more about our services.
Posted on Thursday, April 16th, 2020 at 3:07 pm
The amount of sleep you get each night has a significant impact on your stress levels during the day. According to the American Psychological Association, the average American adult only gets 6.7 hours of sleep per night, which is considerably below the recommended 8-9 hours. But one APA study from 2013 argues that, if Americans got more sleep each night, they would be healthier and happier.
The Need for Sleep
When we sleep, our bodies have a chance to recover and repair themselves for the next day. According to the APA, this is when our brains consolidate our memories, and when our muscles can finally relax and repair. When we don’t get enough sleep, we might lash out at loved ones, fall asleep at the wheel, or be less productive at work. In some cases, people who do not get enough sleep are at a higher risk of developing health complications such as diabetes and high blood pressure.
Manage Your Stress
When we are stressed out during the day, it is often hard to fall asleep at night. You may lie awake in bed for 45 minutes or an hour before falling asleep, which in turn shortens your period of sleep, leaving you more irritated the next day. It’s a vicious cycle.
One way to break the cycle is to manage your stress during the day. Not only will stress management leave you feeling healthier and happier, but it will also let you fall asleep more easily. Some ways to reduce stress are:
- Learn how to say no when you already have too much on your plate. This could be at a job or in your social life. If you explain to your friends or supervisors that you’re already too busy, they should understand and respect that.
- Set aside an hour each day for a relaxing activity. This could be yoga, pilates, baking, reading, playing with your dog, or writing in a journal. Try to stay away from screens to give your eyes and your brain a break.
- Ask for help. If you find that you are constantly overwhelmed with the stresses in your life, you might want to seek out help from a therapist or counselor.
It can be hard to prioritize self-care but remember that you not only deserve sleep and stress relief, but your health also depends on them.
Contact Silent Night Therapy
If your daytime stress is getting in the way of your sleep schedule, or if poor sleep leaves you feeling irritable and groggy, you might want to get in touch with a sleep therapist. At Silent Night Therapy, our specialists can help come up with a plan to get you a better night’s sleep. Whether you are suffering from sleep apnea or another sleep disorder, we are ready to assist you. Please call our number at 631-983-2463 to schedule your appointment today.