Can’t Get Yourself Out of the ‘Laze Zone’? Here’s How to Fight Fatigue
Feeling sleepy all the time despite sleeping more than usual? You’re not alone. Fatigue is a common problem affecting millions of people across the globe. Whether caused by sleep deprivation, medication, or lifestyle, fatigue can have a significant impact on your life. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) estimates that 7% of road accidents are caused by fatigue while the financial impact of lost productivity due to fatigue is estimated at $100 billion annually in the United States.
If you’re tired of feeling exhausted and demotivated all the time, it’s time to make some lifestyle changes. Here are some tips to help you improve your sleep quality, reduce fatigue, and get more done every day.
Sleeping for the Right Duration
Most people believe that adults need 8 hours of sleep every night to maintain a healthy lifestyle. However, this is not entirely accurate. The average human goes through multiple sleep cycles during the night, of primarily two kinds of sleep – non-REM (shallow sleep) and REM (Rapid Eye Movement) or deep sleep. It’s better to wake up between two sleep cycles rather than in the middle of a cycle. The duration of a sleep cycle for a human varies between 90 and 110 minutes.
To find the ideal sleep duration that suits you, use a sleep tracker application or keep adjusting your sleep durations by 15 minutes every week until you find your sweet sleep duration.
Tuning Your Body’s Internal Clock
Your body’s internal clock, or circadian rhythm, regulates when you feel like sleeping or waking up. Following a sleep discipline and sleeping and waking up at the same time, even during weekends, helps set the internal clock in your body. Taking sunbreaks during the day if you work in an office space can also help set your internal clock to a healthy sleep-wake cycle.
Reducing Exposure to Blue Light
Exposure to blue light from electronic devices can disrupt your body’s circadian rhythm, making the brain believe that it’s daylight and reducing the body’s inclination to sleep. To minimize the effects of blue light, try using an app like f.lux, which blocks out blue light from electronic device screens, or wear spectacles with lenses that block out blue light.
Avoiding Chemicals That Impede Sleep
Several chemicals, including nicotine, caffeine, and alcohol, can disrupt your sleep quality. Avoid consuming these substances, particularly after evening. Caffeine, a stimulant found not only in coffee but also in tea, colas, chocolate, and some pain reliever medicines, should be avoided after evening. Nicotine-containing tobacco products should be avoided post-evening.
Nurturing a Healthy Pre-Sleep Regimen
Engage yourself with a good book, avoid electronic gadgets for at least an hour before sleep, try relaxation exercises, write down your thoughts, take a bath, and drink warm herbal tea to help you transition from your wakeful hours to sleep hours.
Making Your Bedroom Environment Conducive to Sleep
The right environment is crucial for sound sleep. Maintain a dark, quiet, and cool environment for sleep. Use high-quality curtains that block out outside light, use a white noise appliance to shut out outside noises, use an eye mask if required, keep the room well-ventilated, regulate the temperature between 60 and 75°F, and get yourself a comfortable mattress.
Using Power Naps Judiciously
Short power naps can work well for some people, but if you wake up groggy despite sleeping adequately, it might be time to reconsider your napping habits.
Understanding the Impact of Your Meds on Sleep
Some medicines can affect your sleep quality, so it’s important to know when to take them. Avoid sleeping pills, which can interfere with your REM (deep) sleep and create several long-term health problems. Consult your doctor for advice on when to take specific medicines to avoid sleep issues.
Eating for Better Sleep
Eating a balanced diet can also help improve sleep quality. Never skip breakfast, and avoid overeating during dinners. People who eat substantial dinners after 8.30 pm have trouble digesting the food, leading to trouble sleeping.
In conclusion, fatigue can have a significant impact on your life, affecting your productivity, motivation, and overall well-being. The tips listed above can help improve your sleep quality, reduce fatigue, and help you get more done every day. Try incorporating them into your lifestyle and notice how your energy levels start to lift.