Getting a good night’s sleep is a challenge faced by many.
Lack of sleep has become an epidemic in our society and is increasingly common as we age.
There are many causes for poor sleep, some of which need medical assessment, but mostly our ability to sleep well is within our control.
Here is a safe and proven framework for sleep. If you are not sleeping well after implementing this, a visit with your physician is warranted.
A good night’s sleep is all about optimizing your behaviours and environment to fit your body’s natural rhythm.
As humans, we have evolved to be awake when it is light and to sleep when dark. Supporting this circadian rhythm is a cascade of different hormones that signal the body to be alert or sleepy. Our days start with a morning burst of our ‘get up and go’ hormone cortisol, signalling that it is time to greet the day. Over the course of the day, our cortisol wanes until in the evening levels are close to zero. In parallel, adenosine levels build up, signalling fatigue. Adenosine is a by-product of energy expenditure – the more active we are, the greater our adenosine levels. Finally, when dark, our brains release melatonin signalling it is time to sleep. (read more about the Importance of Sleep)
Aligning our behaviours to our body’s hormonal symphony is relatively straight-forward:
First, avoid substances that will alter hormones and affect your sleep:
What do you do if this doesn’t work?
If you have
This is the second part of our SLEEEPSounder series. Check out these other posts:
At Wellness Garage, we are here to support you in your health journey to take control of your health, restore confidence, and optimize your wellness. We do this through solid evidence-based medicine, personal health coaching and instruction, providing you with the knowledge, skills and support you need to apply healthy habits to your life.
Learn more about how Wellness Garage can help you take control of your health.
Dr. Brendan Byrne