Sleep: The best medicine you can takeThere is a reason why sleep has been researched for decades. Nothing can compare to sleep’s healing and restorative abilities and your brain seems to take special advantage of this. While sleeping, your brain stores memories, removes toxic waste, and maintains its neurons. Therefore, when you do not get enough quality sleep your brain suffers resulting in limited cognition, neuron damage, and even brain shrinkage!
Every hour counts for or against you…You can really think about sleep like a score card. Every hour of sleep you get is like a point added to your brain health score. And every hour of sleep you lose subtracts a point. In addition, the common idea of 'catching up on sleep' is, in fact a myth and does not quickly add points to your score.
Sleep determines how you ageWhen you were younger, your parents most likely had you take a nap during the day and sent you to bed early at night. They may have even told you that you needed your sleep to help you grow up strong and healthy. Well, that is still the case now! While sleep deprivation causes brain shrinkage, you should also know that brain shrinkage is associated with brain degeneration as seen in Alzheimer’s disease. This means that the effect of sleep loss on your brain is very difficult to reverse and becomes increasingly damaging as you age.
Try these techniques to get more Sleep
- Get 30 to 60 minutes of direct sunlight exposure at noon
- Dim artificial light sources at night to protect your melatonin level
- Install blue light wavelength-suppressing technology on your computer
- Stop using electronics at least one hour before bed
- Sleep in a dark, cool room (below 21°C)