The easiest way to improve your quality of life is sleep

 by Judy Fisk

Imagine: Someone came over to sell a brand new magical pill.

This tablet can significantly improve your memory, overall cognitive performance, ability to learn new information, ability to accept facial expressions, mood, ability to deal with problems, metabolism, heart disease and immune system.

Will you buy?

Yes, you guessed it: the tablets actually exist, but not in the form of tablets. You can enjoy all of these benefits for free, and all you need is to go to bed early. That's it.

but! The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calls sleep deprivation a public health crisis, which means that one in three adults lacks sleep. About 80% report sleep problems at least once a week, and according to a 2016 study, sleep deprivation "losses to the US economy more than $400 billion a year and results in a loss of 1.23 million workdays per year."

If this is not enough, here is an incomplete list of how sleep deprivation hurts you personally:

■ Your overall cognitive performance—especially your visual attention and ability to form memory—will decline. (More generally, this is the "head fog" that we will experience after late night.)

■ Your ability to learn new information will be impaired by lack of sleep before and after you learn new information.

■ You may not be able to interpret facial expressions correctly, or even interpret some expressions—even neutral ones—as threats.

■ When you encounter obstacles, you may be more violent and react worse.

■ In addition to severely damaged mental abilities, your body is affected: lack of adequate sleep can lead to weight gain, which increases your risk of diabetes and heart disease, and makes you more resistant to the common cold. reduce.

This is crazy! All of this is due to lack of sleep!

So what should we do? We have prepared a guide for you to help you get a better night's sleep.

First, find out how much sleep you need. Generally speaking, if you wake up and feel tired, then you will not sleep enough.

However, the gold standard of sleeping eight hours a night may not be for you. A 2015 study questioned whether we needed this magic number, so following your body is the best way to find the right rhythm. The only real guideline is to get as much sleep as possible so that you feel refreshed and energized the next day, and then do it every night. Keeping a record of the sleep diary - like this - can help you solve this problem.

Next, figure out the natural rhythm of your body. Maybe after years of trying, you need to admit that you are not the kind of person who gets up early. This is very good! Do this test to find out what type of sleeper you are, and don't fight your body's natural sleep tendency.

Finally, maintain a consistent sleep schedule. This may be the most important part of overall sleep health. We all have a biological clock, which is a 24-hour timer inside the body. It naturally tells us when to sleep, the best way to rest and feel energetic is to keep this biological clock. Fall asleep and wake up at the same time every day (including weekends) and try to make your schedule as regular as possible, including meal time, exercise habits, time to watch the screen (and when to turn off the screen) and morning sun time. Don't forget to keep the bedroom cool.


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