Why is sleep so important
The effects of a lack of sleep
Constant poor or lack of sleep can lead to 'brain fog' and may leave you feeling low or experience feelings of anxiety.
The long term effects of a lack of sleep are even more serious
Sleep is a tool our body uses to do all sorts of useful things; by not allowing yourself this time, you can put yourself at risk of diseases such as...
- Type 2 diabetes; high blood pressure and heart disease
- Weight gain, cold, flu and other viruses
The NHS recommends 9-11 hours of sleep per night for children and young people aged between 5-16 years old
The benefits of sleep
Whilst we sleep our body processes information we have learnt during the day.
This applies to both our brain and muscles, meaning that sleep helps us retain information and physical skills learnt during the day.
Sleep boosts our immune system, lowering the risk of infections and diseases and consequently increasing our attendance at school,
Sleep allows our body to recover, thus meaning we can continue exercising and placing physical demands on our bodies and becoming even more healthy.
A study carried out by the sleep council in May 2020 found that 74% of parents reported a reliance of their children on electronic devices effecting their ability to go to sleep on time.
Ensure you are getting enough sleep each night by keeping to a routine when you get home from school.
How to change your habits
We thought it would be a good idea to explore some simple tips.
- Stick to a sleep schedule, aim to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day.
- Try not to exercise too late in the day. Exercise is great but try to time it no later than 2-3 hours before bed.
- Colas, coffee, teas, and chocolate contain caffeine, which is a stimulant. Even consuming these in the afternoon can influence your sleep. Try not to have these drinks after 3.00pm in the afternoon.
- A light snack before bed is okay, but a heavy meal can cause digestive issues, which interferes with sleep.
- Make sure to leave time to relax before bed
- Take a hot bath before bed. The drop in body temperature after a bath may help you to feel sleepy, and the bath can help you to slow down and relax before bed.
- Have a dark, cool (in temperature), gadget free bedroom. We sleep better at night if the temperature in the room is kept on the cool side. Gadgets such as mobile phones and computers can be a distraction, so it’s a good idea to leave them downstairs.