Sleep While You're Alive: Cultivating Good Sleep Hygiene
Are you one of the “you can sleep when you’re dead” believers?
I remember hearing this phrase from adults in my childhood when the day was very full, offering permission to skip sleep in favor of more productivity. Well since my childhood, a lot of sleep research has happened, proving what many of us know already to be true: sleep is crazy important.
The importance of sleep “Relative to the recommended seven to nine hours, the shorter your sleep, the shorter your life span.” – Matthew Walker, Why We Sleep
If you are waiting to “sleep when you’re dead,” research shows it’s likely going to be here sooner than later. This comes from a combination of factors from short-term risks like driving while sleepy to longer-term risks like weakened immune systems, fluctuations in blood sugar, increased likelihood of cardiovascular disease, psychiatric issues (e.g. depression and anxiety), and weight gain (plus trouble losing weight), to name a few.
What does sleep actually do?