San Francisco, Marin, and Oakland, CA
Millions of adults are plagued with sleep disorders. From insomnia to sleep apnea, the fact remains that if you have a sleep disorder, your life may be upended by chronic fatigue, mood swings, loss of sex drive, and more. Some reports even state that sleep apnea sufferers are at a higher risk of being involved in an automobile accident. It’s a new year, which means setting new goals and living healthier for most people. That is why today on the blog, our sleep apnea dentists in the Bay Area share New Year’s resolutions for getting better sleep.
Set a Routine
One of the biggest culprits of poor sleep is lacking a routine. Do you go to bed whenever you feel tired? Do you like to sleep in on the weekend or days off? This is the perfect example of an irregular sleep schedule. Our bodies are designed for routine, especially when it comes to sleep. Ideally, you should go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even when it’s your day off. You can never truly make up lost sleep. You’re better off sticking to a routine than you are to try and “catch up” on sleep later.
Relax Before Bed
Sometimes the body needs a little bit of help relaxing. Either by reading a book, meditation, or soaking in the tub, find a way to help your body relax. Avoid exercising too close to bedtime. Save emotional conversations for earlier in the day. And you might want to skip watching the news, especially if it gets you riled up right before bedtime. Instead, choose an activity that helps you feel relaxed. This also queues your brain that it’s almost sleepy time.
Shut Off the Screens
Many studies have shown that our electronic devices emit a blue light responsible for interrupting the brain’s ability to produce melatonin, the hormone that controls our sleep and wake cycles. This includes laptops, cellphones, e-readers, and television. Avoid looking at your electronic devices too close to bedtime.
A tired body is more likely to want to sleep. Exercising daily also helps keep your heart healthy and keeps you from packing on unwanted pounds. Aim to get at least 30 minutes or more of exercise a day either by walking, jogging, high-intensity workouts, or weightlifting. Always be sure to consult your doctor before starting a new exercise program.
Limit Caffeine and Alcohol Consumption
It’s no surprise that caffeine can excite the body, preventing it from sleeping. Therefore, aim to limit your caffeine consumption and avoid too much caffeine late in the day. To help get an energy boost, take a short walk mid-day. It does your body more good than you realize! Also, a common myth is that alcohol induces sleep. Actually, it doesn’t. In fact, it can impede sleep. So, if you’re struggling with going to sleep, avoid alcohol for a while to see if it makes a difference.
Destress Your Life
Easier said than done, right? For some individuals, stress can be so bad that it overtakes their life, preventing them from falling asleep or going back to sleep. If you find that your mind is bogged down with stress and worry, consider relaxation or meditation techniques such as yoga, exercising, partaking in religious activities, or even seeing a therapist. Stress can take a toll on your life, including your health and your sleep!
Get a Sleep Apnea Screening
Lastly, if you still struggle to get enough sleep each night, you could suffer from sleep apnea. Chronic daytime fatigue, snoring, and mood swings are hallmark signs of untreated sleep apnea. If you think that you might have sleep apnea or would like to schedule a sleep apnea screening with a dentist in the Bay Area, contact Glen Park Dental at (415) 585-1500. We also offer a noninvasive method of managing sleep apnea that involves wearing a custom-made oral appliance. It’s much more comfortable and quieter than the CPAP. To learn more or schedule a consultation, contact Glen Park Dental today to get the sleep that your body needs.