At least 7 to 8 hours of sleep is required every day for human beings to recoup the lost energy and to repair the wear and tear in the body due to preceding day’s work and activities. Its not only the quantity of sleep but quality of sleep also matters a lot. A good quality sleep over a shorter duration of time is much better than uncomfortable, poor quality sleep of longer duration as it does not serve the purpose. A poor quality sleep leads to hangover type of condition in the morning with fatigue, increased sleepiness, laziness, poor concentration and lack of interest in work during the day. Thats why getting a good quality sleep for a recommended duration is very essential not only for maintaining good health but also for giving optimum performance during daytime activities including work and leisure activities.
The prerequisites for a goodnight’s sleep are given below.
1. Daytime Do’s:
A. Exposure to Sunlight:
Adequate exposure to natural light is essential for release of hormones such as melatonin to maintain circadian rhythm and regulate sleep cycle.
At least 30 minutes of strenuous aerobic exercise on at least 4 days of a week can ensure good quality sleep. Brisk walking, jogging, cycling and swimming are common types of aerobic exercises.
2. Daytime Don’ts:
A 15-20 minute long daytime nap improves, performance, alertness, attention and concentration. However any daytime sleep more than that will adversely affect the nighttime sleep.
Limit your work to working hours at your workplace. Neither one should overstay at the workplace to work a bit more nor work should be brought home.
3. Pre-Bed Do’s:
A. Physical Relaxation:
To induce and maintain a good quality sleep one’s body especially should be relaxed. Physical relaxation can be achieved by pre-bed light stretches or warm shower.
B. Psychological Relaxation:
One has to be mentally relaxed in order to fall asleep. This can be achieved by having a soothing conversation or reading a book.