I thought I knew the “Real Deal” on sleep.
But the other day, I tuned into NPR and listened to a segment about how people are not getting enough sleep overall and how it’s affecting their health. I learned so much! (You know it’s a good segment when you stay in the car to finish it even after you get to your destination)
One of the parts of the segment that I found fascinating and also helpful was all about tips and myths when it comes to those times when you can’t fall asleep or wake up too early or the middle of the night and can’t back to sleep:
You should not actually stay in bed for very long awake, because your brain is this remarkably associative device and it quickly learns that the bed is about being awake. So you should go to another room — a room that’s dim. Just read a book — no screens, no phones — and only when you’re sleepy return to the bed. And that way your brain relearns the association with your bedroom being about sleep rather than wakefulness. …
I did not know this. I knew you should stay away from screens but not to just get up. This makes so much sense!
The info on how much sleep we need and how most people are deficient is astounding as well. The myth that we need less sleep as we age has always fascinated me (I actually did not know this was a myth….so this was eye opening!) It makes sense why I was tired! I do need more sleep. A-HA!
The amount of sleep — the total amount of sleep that you get — starts to decrease the older that we get. I think one of the myths out there is that we simply need less sleep as we age, and that’s not true, in fact. We need just as much sleep in our 60s, 70s [and] 80s, as we do when we’re in our 40s. It’s simply that the brain is not capable of generating that sleep, which it still needs, and the body still needs. So, total amount of sleep actually decreases.
Below is the whole interview with Sleep Scientist, Matthew Walker. Highly recommended!!!!
Another great post on sleep here at Your Healthy Hustle: