Some of us don´t give sleep the importance it deserve, we have a lot of things to do and we love doing them that we don´t want to go to sleep, we´re so inspired and motivated by our work that someone needs to stop us, others don´t sleep enough because they need to finish their work even when they hate what they do and there are some others that can get 8 hours of sleep every night, they go to bed early but can´t fall asleep.
If you are in the last group you may have a sleep disorder and it´s the reason why you can´t fall asleep or you wake up at night, here are some of the most common sleep disorders:
1.- Insomnia.- When we have trouble to fall asleep or we wake up frequently during the night and when we wake up we don´t feel rested we feel like we didn´t get enough sleep, this can be caused by stress, jet lag, illness.
2.- Sleep apnea.- Here the regular pattern of breathing while we are sleep gets interrupted for short periods of time because the airway gets blocked.
3.- Nightmares.- This one is when our dreams are scary and we get frightened and fearful so we wake up, if this happens every once in a while is normal but when it´s constant it can be caused by stress, anxiety or worries.
4.- Shift work.- Working at night goes against the internal clock of the body and it´s harder to stay alert and productive during work time and we may have trouble to get 7 – 8 hours of sleep during day. Blocking all light and noises during our sleep time is key to help us get as much sleep as we can. Some people doing shift work like to spend some time of the day doing stuff they like or need to do and many of them don´t get enough sleep so for them is really important to get the recommended 7 to 8 hours.
5.- Restless legs syndrome.- If we feel the urge to move our legs at night while we are sleeping we may suffer from RLS, one of the causes is low levels of iron but there can be more.
We all suffer from sleep disorders from time to time, if we´re dealing with a very stressful situation, if we´ve been traveling a lot, if we are worried, it´s normal to have some nights of poor sleep every once in a while but when this is consistent then we need to do something.
There are different treatments for sleep disorders, some of them will be more beneficial than others and as with any other treatment you will get results fast, at least the symptoms will lower but almost all sleep disorders can be improved by making some changes to our lifestyle that start with making better choices, being more active during the day, especially in the morning, reducing stress and following a healthy nutrition program will improve the quality of sleep.
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