While it has been scientifically proven, many still do not appreciate the benefits of a good night's sleep.
Times are different now, though. Once upon a time, we were able to stick to a daily routine that actually enabled us to avoid sleep deprivation or at least keep our circadian rhythm in check should we choose to do so.
However, a giant spanner in the form of the pandemic has been thrown in the works, culminating in the demise of our previous way of life. Maintaining a daily routine in the face of anxiety and staying at home has become a herculean task in itself, let alone getting a sound sleep.
A heightened state of stress caused by various factors that originated from the coronavirus outbreak has given birth to a sleeping crisis. Dubbed "coronasomnia" by experts, it should be noted that lack of sleep had already become a public health crisis in itself with 10 to 15 per cent of the global population suffering from chronic insomnia.
The pandemic has amplified it to the extreme. Reports have shown that people are sleeping even less ever since COVID-19 took over the world, with many having lost track of time during the lockdown. The ramifications of sleep deprivation can be quite severe on one's health, ranging from a decline in productivity and hypertension to depression and a much shorter fuse.
Something is very wrong with the world but we should not carry that burden on our own to the point where we have to give up one of the pillars to sustainable health. Check out the following tips below to help you in recovering your quality of sleep:
The blue light from our smartphones, laptops, and televisions are known to mimic the sun and keep us awake. Turn them off at least thirty minutes or more before you hit the sack. Listen to soothing music instead.
Your body needs to keep active during the day, which makes it extremely important to make time for some exercise to raise your body temperature. If possible, do so in the morning and outside to get some much-needed exposure to natural light.
Go easy on the naps
Naps are no substitutes for a night's sleep. If you doze off for too long or too late in the day, it could jeopardise your chances of getting a good shut-eye at night. Limit naps to less than thirty minutes and do so before 1pm.
Get a bit of sun
Give your circadian rhythm a helping hand in regulating itself by getting some sunlight in the morning. If going outside is not an option, at least open the curtains and let the sunshine through.
Minimise media consumption
There is no shortage of terrible news right now, which can aggravate your anxiety and depression, making it even more difficult to sleep. Steer clear of the news whenever you start and end your day to reduce stress.
Keep a healthy diet
What you eat and drink can affect your sleep quality at night. Cut down on your alcohol and caffeine intake – crucially during the later hours of the day – to avoid sleep disruption.
Photo: Chris Thompson