S.according to recent studies they are well 12,000,000 people suffering from insomnia or sleep disorders in Italy. Difficulty falling asleep, frequent awakenings during the night, early awakenings in the morning and difficulty getting back to sleep.
Almost one in three Italians sleep an insufficient number of hours e about 1 in 4 adults suffer from chronic or transient insomnia. Especially women, about 60% of the total. On the other hand, 20% of cases concern children and minors. Figures that, according to experts, would even be doubled after the Covid pandemic.
How can you avoid it? Addressing the problem in its many causes and removing them with a synergistic action on several levels: an adequate management of mental flows during the day, the daily practice of some short anti-stress exercises and the help of hi-tech gadget designed to facilitate a good rest.
The consequences of a bad rest
Sleeping is one of ours basic needs: must necessarily be satisfied like drinking, eating and breathing and is one of the pillars on which the foundations of well-being, health and well-agingwhich is the opportunity to age well physically and mentally.
In most cases, sleep disturbances lead psycho-physical discomfort upon awakeningdaytime sleepiness, difficulty concentrating, memory impairment andhumor.
Sleeping for a short time would damage not only our cognitive abilities, but also the brain. People who sleep less than six hours a night cope a higher risk of having a stroke compared to those who sleep more and, if chronic, the problem contributes to obesity, diabetes, hypercholesterolemia and depression.
Curiosities from science
Prolonged lack of sleep has very similar effects to alcohol consumption, because it interferes with movement, language and self-control. An Australian study published by Ann Williamson and Anne-Marie Feyer showed that staying awake for 17 hours can make you feel as after drinking two glasses of wineand that staying up for 20 hours can make you feel like you’ve drunk twice as much.
Pre-sleep activities for better sleep
Neither The sleep manual (Edizioni LSWR, 328 pages, from € 13.99) three authors among the leading experts in sleep in Italy – Antonio Grasso, Francesca Milanboth dentists experienced in sleep respiratory disorders certified by the Italian Society of Dental Sleep Medicine (SIMSO), and Giulia Milioli, neurologist expert in sleep medicine certified by the Italian Association of Sleep Medicine (AIMS) and by the European Sleep Research Society (ESRS) – offer a complete program that aims to unhinge our bad habits to create new ones. In addition, they reveal many secrets for optimal sleep starting, for example, from pre-sleep activity.
The first rule is: stop to too many thoughts. We must learn to detach ourselves from the things that happened during the day or from those scheduled for the next day: we must learn to calm the mind and remove stress and anxiety.
The use of essential oils relax body and mind. For a good sleep adjuvant aromatherapy the most effective is the lavender one, which counteracts anxiety and has a sedative effect. Also vanilla can help: it calms the nervous system and improves mood.
Also listen to relaxing music helps to calm our mind. From a study of 651 subjects, 32% listen to classical music in order to rest better, 11% rock music and 7% pop and acoustic.
How to prepare the bedroom
Remove from the room where you sleep on TV and PC, because they do not help to detach the mind. Cell phones should also be left outside the bedroom: the fewer magnetic fields around us, the better the quality of your rest will be. Also avoid having a room too full of useless objects, which can activate the mind (and accumulate dust).
The walls must have light and neutral colors that can remind us of nature. To be chosen, therefore, blue, green, white, dove gray and gray in their more subdued shades.
And as for dress code wear something without buttons or elastics that are too tight. Avoid the hinges. Choose natural and breathable fabrics, that they do not make you sweat, but neither do you feel cold, because both could cause micro-awakening and affect the continuity of sleep.
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