Myth vs. Fact: How Healthy Are Your Sleep Habits?

Young girl in bed noticing her sleep habits can effect your health.
Healthy sleep habits can improve your good night’s rest, and you’ll feel more refreshed the next day.

Can’t sleep? You’re not alone.

You may not even realize your sleep habits are affecting your health. Sleep is essential to function properly during the day, feel good and be healthy. Some health conditions contributing to your sleep disorder could be:

  • Insomnia
  • Restless legs syndrome
  • Irregular sleep-wake schedules
  • Unexplained breathing disturbances during sleep

How Healthy Are Your Sleep Habits?

An estimated 40 million Americans have trouble falling or staying asleep. Sleep deprivation can affect your heart, memory, immune system and even your weight. That’s why it’s important to develop healthy sleep habits. Check out the facts below to help determine whether you’re getting the best sleep.

If you have to wake up very early during the week, it’s a good idea to sleep late on the weekends so you can catch up on sleep.

Myth. No matter how tempting it is to sleep late, it’s best to establish a regular sleep schedule. Fall asleep and wake up at the same time every day. Stick to your schedule as much as possible, even on weekends. A regular routine keeps your body’s clock steady.

To help you fall asleep more easily at night, schedule your workout after dinner.

Myth. It’s great to exercise for at least 30 minutes most days of the week; it’s not a good idea to work out right before bedtime. Instead, exercise earlier and give yourself a chance to unwind at day’s end. Giving your body time to relax after an activity will help you fall asleep.

If you snore, you should tell your doctor about it.

Fact. Loud snoring is a sign of sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is a serious sleep disorder when shallow breathing or short periods when breathing stops during sleep. Long-term sleep disorders such as sleep apnea have been linked to a greater risk of high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke. Snoring doesn’t automatically mean you have sleep apnea. But tell your doctor if you snore, wake up tired after a full night of sleep, notice your breathing is shallow or you gasp for air when sleeping.

Fatigue, Loud Snoring and Headaches?

You may suffer from sleep apnea, a condition where your breathing stops for a brief period. Don’t ignore these persisting symptoms. Schedule an appointment to learn more about sleep apnea.

If you can’t fall asleep at night, watch TV or read a book until you feel drowsy.

Myth. It can be tempting to flip on the TV when you can’t doze off, but that’s not the best pre-bedtime routine. Instead, turn off the television and put away your phone, computer or iPad. A quiet, darkened room is a signal that it’s time to sleep. Quick tip- if you wake up in the middle of the night, lie in bed with your eyes closed, inhale and exhale deeply to help you doze back off.

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