If you’re looking to improve your life in 2022, improved health is likely to be your main goal. While most people set their sights on losing weight or becoming more active, learning how to improve your sleep could prove to be the most important change you make by far.
Health is happiness, and your sleeping habits will provide the platform to build upon - especially if you currently can’t sleep at night. This article/guide will answer all of your key questions on the subject:
- Why should sleep be the foundation for a healthier 2022?
- What happens to your body when you don’t sleep well?
- How will sleep influence your other goals for 2022?
- How can you establish better sleeping patterns?
- Are you getting enough quality sleep?
The 2022 of your dreams awaits.
How does sleep affect your health?
We all know that sleep plays an important role in our lives, but most people still underestimate the impact it can have on their health. As reported by MayoClinic, adults need at least seven hours of sleep each night, with most people falling into the 7-9 hours category.
When you regularly fail to reach that amount of sleep, you will start to notice an array of health issues, such as;
- Weakened immunity against viruses and other common illnesses.
- Higher blood pressure, particularly if you sleep for fewer than five hours.
- Slower reactions and reduced attentiveness.
- Increased risk of diabetes.
- Increased risk of obesity, not least as poor eating habits will follow.
- Low sex drive and loss of libido.
- Poor balance and coordination.
- Increased risk of heart attacks, irregular heartbeats, and strokes.
- Reduced memory and impacted motor function.
Furthermore, a lack of sleep can take a toll on your appearance. From bags under the eyes to other skin problems and damaged nails, the esthetic changes will be clear.
Worse still, the physical dangers linked to insomnia will increase your risk of suffering accidents and/or making poor life decisions due to a lack of energy and motivation. Most people notice at least some of the impacts after just a single rough night. When it becomes a regular pattern, however, severe damage can occur within just weeks - and you will seem like a completely different person.
How does sleep affect your mental health?
In addition to physical impacts, a lack of sleep can cause a plethora of mental health issues. For starters, sleep is responsible for regulating cortisol, which is the stress gene. When asking how sleep affects your health, the impact on stress levels is key.
Your mental health can be impacted in a variety of noticeable ways. Some of the most telling examples are;
- Chronic sleep deprivation can increase your risk of anxiety.
- Insomnia can leave you feeling depressed.
- Exhaustion slows cognitive development, which causes frustration.
- Impaired judgments can impact relationships and more.
- Seeing the physical and esthetic changes can make you feel down too.
Sleep deprivation will ultimately increase your risk of developing negative feelings and emotions while simultaneously restricting positive elements.
The mental health impacts of poor sleep are closely linked to physical issues, which underlined the importance of correcting the problem. Ideally, you will want to prevent depression and anxiety as it can be very hard to overcome them, which is why it's so important to establish a positive sleep routine.
How will healthier sleep patterns improve your life?
Developing healthy sleep patterns that align with your chronotype won’t only prevent an array of physical and mental health issues. It will actively deliver a wide range of benefits in many different aspects of your life. Check out our chronotype quiz to learn what your chronotype is.
For starters, the increased energy levels and happier mindset will give you a far better shot at achieving whatever other aspirations you’ve set for 2022. Whether your New Year’s Resolutions are health-related (get fit, lose weight, etc.) or associated with other aspects of your life (career, quitting bad habits, learning skills, etc.), the benefits are huge.
The fact is that correcting your sleep patterns will improve approximately one-third of your life should not be underestimated either. It is one of the reasons why it is an upgrade that will bring greater improvements than any single healthy habit established during waking hours.
Our wonderful sleep journal is great for helping you better understand your current patterns, so you can target what needs to be changed.
When added to the fact that the physical changes caused by sleep deprivation can reduce your quality and quantity of life, you must implement the right changes ASAP.
How to improve your sleep
No two people are identical, which is why you will need to adapt your sleeping habits to match your situation. This may include some unconventional ideas, that you can read about here. Aside from the aforementioned chronotype, several ingredients will be used to find the recipe for success.
While each of the elements must be adapted to reflect your situation, focusing on the following features should lead to significant improvements;
- Find a mattress that has the right firmness for your personal preference.
- Choose comfortable bed sheets, pillows, and duvets.
- Find black-out drapes or blinds to create a better sleeping environment.
- Keep your bedroom free from clutter.
- Stop using social media and video games for an hour before bed.
- Start journaling or creating a ‘to do list for tomorrow.
- Consider buying ear defense plugs if your spouse snores.
- Invest in improved security for your home.
- Go to bed at roughly the same time each night.
- Incorporating sleep supplements, like our Sleep Magic, Deep Sleep, or Max Relax into your nightly routine.
Crucially, once you find the right sleeping pattern, you must try to stick to it. Once your body adapts to a cycle, you should see that your general sleeping habits are far better.
Aside from getting enough sleep, this will help you reach the pivotal REM cycle, which is where your body and mind will see the biggest benefits. Moreover, knowing that you are in control of the situation should lift a weight of stress from your shoulders. Make this the first goal for a better 2022 and you will soon be able to put more energy into your other goals for the year too.
Regain control of your sleep patterns today
Now that you understand how poor sleep habits impact your life and how to improve your sleep, you should feel better positioned to boost your health in the months to come.
The first step, however, is to gain a better understanding of how unhealthy your current habits are. Take our free sleep quiz to find out now!