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The Value of a Good Night’s Sleep

Most of us know that it is recommended that adults get between 7-9 hours per sleep per night, so why is it that 1/3 of adults regularly get less than 6 hours of sleep per night? (1)

Between work, school, family, and recreation time, it seems that sleep has taken a back seat in priority to all of our other responsibilities and activities.
Many recent blogs point out the risks of not getting enough sleep. A recent study done by the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic reported that a number of bodily systems are negatively affected by inadequate sleep including the heart, lungs, and kidneys. Disturbances in appetite, metabolism, weight control, immune function, disease resistance, sensitivity to pain, reaction time, mood, and brain function were also reported.

So with so much at risk, why not get the recommended time required to sleep every night? For some people, that isn’t an option. With all of our responsibilities that we face in a “now” society, we are lucky if we can get 6 hours of sleep per night.

What can I do?

With limited sleep time, it is important to maximize the sleep that you do get. Make sure you follow some important guidelines before going to bed, including turning off electronic devices 30 minutes before going to sleep. Exercise regularly, but don’t exercise too close to when you go to bed. Avoid foods that are difficult to digest including foods high in fat before going to bed. Finally, make sure you have a mattress that will allow you to sleep as soundly as possible. The right mattress will in theory, give your back the support and alignment needed to keep your spine straight, but at the same time, provide enough cushioning to the hips and the shoulders for you to sleep comfortably without having to turn all night. This can be increasingly important as we age, and our sleep requirements become greater. If we can get our body comfortable, we can get into the deep REM sleep that our body requires to heal and rejuvenate itself faster, which will help us maximize the limited amount of sleep we get.

This office has taken the time to research the major mattress retail products and has identified intelliBED as the first true medical-grade sleep surface available for home use. By using co-polymer intelli-Gel® in place of foam, intelliBEDs provide superior comfort and support without harmful off-gassing and they wear 2-3 times better than any of the foam mattresses. With a strict sleep regimen, and the right mattress, six hours of restful sleep will be much more beneficial than 8 hours of disturbed sleep that doesn’t allow us to get into the deep stages of sleep.

1. National Sleep Foundation

For more information please call our office!
Dr. Girgenti