More than a third of U.S. adults aren’t getting the recommended eight hours of sleep, reports the CDC. That is close to 100 million people putting themselves at risk for a laundry list of ailments, including being four times as likely to catch the common cold. Other side effects can include:
- Increased risk of heart disease
- Increased risk of heart attack
- Increased risk of heart failure
- High blood pressure
- Increased risk of stroke
- Development of metabolic syndrome
And, the quality of your sleep is just as important as the quantity. One sleep disruption becoming more and more prevalent is going to bed with the TV on. While many view this as harmless white noise or the equivalent of using a nightlight, it turns out that the sleep you get while exposed to background noise and artificial light coming from the TV can disrupt your circadian rhythm and lead to depression.
Even after hearing this, you might still be asking yourself, “What are we gaining by sleeping a full eight hours?” We found some great reasons to hit the snooze button:
- Improved memory
- Increased immune system activity
- Spurred creativity
- Increased athletic performance
- Lowered stress
- Improved mood.
There is virtually no downside to getting enough sleep.
Basically, you can go to the gym five times a week and eat healthy, but none of it matters if you aren’t counting sheep in a way that is both consistent and healthy. If you are having trouble falling asleep and looking for methods to speed you on your way to sawing logs, here is a guide that might help find a method that works best for you!