9 Reasons Why Sleeping Is Important to Wellbeing

Heart Health, Glowing Skin & Increased Libido Are Just a Few of the Benefits of Getting a Good Night’s Sleep

“Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself.” –Max Ehrmann, from Desiderata

Talking about the importance of sleep may seem like a big yawner to most of us—right there with “eat your vegetables” and “exercise regularly”. After hearing such phrases countless numbers of times they’ve all but lost their meaning.

We know we’re supposed to eat right. We know we should be getting more cardio. And we know that there’s nothing like a good night’s rest to rejuvenate us.

[sofa-art] Sleeping is Important to Wellbeing.It’s just that binge-watching Downton Abbey with a big bowl of popcorn and a bottle of wine sounds a lot more appealing on most nights of the week.

And that’s fine. Sometimes.

The problems arise when vegging out becomes a lifestyle rather than an occasional indulgence.

Max Ehrmann had it right, maybe even more than he knew.

Many fears are born of fatigue …

So are things like depression, auto-immune disorders, and miscalculations that can lead to costly, even fatal mistakes at home and at work (the Challenger explosion, the Chernobyl meltdown, and the Exxon Valdez oil spill, among other disasters, have been linked to sleep deprivation).

But instead of dwelling on the negatives—all of the horrible things that could happen if you don’t get enough rest—we’re going to look at some of the benefits of going to bed on time.

Here Are 9 Reasons to Get Excited About Sleeping

  1. Sleep helps you learn how to play the piano faster. It also helps improve your two-step, perfect your French pronunciation, and get comfortable with the paddle-shifters in your spouse’s new car. The brain uses the time that you’re asleep to process what’s come before and prepare for what’s next. Proper sleep is always important, and it’s an especially powerful ally the night before you take on a new project or endeavor.
  2. People who get enough sleep think more clearly than those who don’t. Thinking clearly and being able to concentrate for longer periods of time are hallmark characteristics of the well-rested. And this means not only faster learning, but fewer accidents, greater productivity and increased problem-solving skills.
  3. You’ll get along better with your family and friends. Among the many possible results of having a sleep deficient brain are depression and/or erratic mood swings, impulsiveness and an inability to pay attention—none good for our interactions with other people. It makes sense then that people who prioritize sleep report higher levels of satisfaction in their relationships.
  4. When you lie down and close your eyes your body is repairing itself. From your head to your heart to your cells, your body needs you to sleep so that it can heal. There’s a reason why “plenty of rest” is still and always a favorite prescription for the common cold—it works. But even if you’re not sick or visibly injured, there’s still healing to do. Consider that we are exposed to literally millions of pathogens daily, and that the difference between health and illness is our immune system’s ability or inability to destroy them when they attack. Then consider that …
  5. People who get regular sleep have stronger immune systems. And people with weakened or compromised immune systems are frequently tired. Furthermore, sleeping too little has been linked to the onset of many autoimmune disorders, such as Parkinson’s Disease, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and Narcolepsy.
  6. You’ll enjoy a healthier heart if you commit to an earlier bedtime. You’ll be decreasing your risk of heart disease—and also kidney disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and stroke.
  7. You can lose weight by taking a nap. It’s true. People who get enough shut eye are less likely to be obese. The reason being that sleeping helps maintain the balance between the hormones that make you feel hungry (called ghrelin) and the ones that make you feel full (known as leptin). Not getting enough sleep results in ghrelin levels going up and leptin levels going down … equals being hungrier than you are after spending some quality time with the Sandman … equals weight gain.
  8. Sleeping more leads to increased vitality and libido. As a matter of fact, if you want to kill your sex life, not sleeping enough is a great way to do it—being fatigued is usually accompanied by higher levels of tension and lower levels of energy, neither of which are very stimulating.
  9. People who sleep soundly have healthier skin. We’ve all had those nights when we stay out (and up) too late—and besides feeling a bit fuzzy, the next day is usually marked by red and puffy eyes. But when we make burning the candle at both ends a habit, our bodies release more cortisol (the stress hormone). In large amounts cortisol breaks down skin collagen, which can lead to dark circles under the eyes, excessive wrinkling and overall lackluster skin.

 

Are you having trouble sleeping but you want to sleep? Is it due to an overload of responsibilities?

Call us in the greater Washington, DC metro area at 301-650-4169 or drop us a line via our Contact page.

We can help.

 

To your healthiest self,

Care for You

 

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