A weekend lie-in may not counteract nights of little sleep, expert warns
Catching up on sleep at the weekend may seem like a good idea, but according to body clock expert Sam Lewtas trying to do so is “less than optimal for our general and mental health”.
While currently researching and trialling his circadian lighting invention in The Walton Centre, Liverpool, Lewtas shared the health implications of poor sleep.
“In addition to simply feeling tired, there are measurable impacts even after just one night’s poor sleep such as increased blood pressure and insulin resistance,” said Lewtas.
Over time, consistently poor sleep “can take our health in the wrong direction”.
Lewtas added: “Poor sleep can also affect our concentration, decision making ability and make us more irritable.
READ MORE… Going to sleep at the same time all week could lower risk of diseases
“So, sometimes, the answer to some of life’s challenges really should be to sleep on it.”
Sleep Expert at Emma, The Sleep Company, Theresa Schnorbach shared some tips on how to sleep better.
Schnorbach said: “A regular sleep schedule helps our bodies to stay healthy, however, this won’t be possible for everyone to achieve.
“An irregular sleep pattern can cause an imbalance between the internal urge to sleep and the information coming from outside (for instance, the light from the sun).”
For those working shifts, Schnorbach recommended dividing your sleep period into two parts.
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Schnorbach elaborated: “The first should be taken immediately after your shift ends and last for four hours.
“After that, you can wake up and complete other activities. In this first period, you can also catch another couple hours of rest if the drive to sleep returns.
“The second period of rest should then come in the hours immediately before your next shift work shift.”
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Schnorbach said this two-part sleep routine could increase your feeling of alertness.
For those who struggle to fall asleep, maintaining a sleep-conducive bedroom is crucial.
Tips include sleeping on a comfortable mattress and pillow, and having a cool, dark and quiet bedroom.
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