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Is Your Sleep Out of Whack Now That You Are in Quarantine?

The internal clock

The internal clock

All individuals possess what is called 'an internal clock', which has as main purpose to schedule sleep and wakefulness within one entire day of 24 hours.

Now comes the difference in regards to how the 'clock' works for each person: there are people who wake up earlier and go to bed earlier as well - for them the cycle is shorter and there are also people who, on the other hand wake up later and go to sleep later. It all depends, in fact, on what is known as 'zeitgebers', which translates by external signals necessary in order to synchronize the 'clock'.

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Is Your Sleep Out of Whack Now That You Are in Quarantine?

Is Your Sleep Out of Whack Now That You Are in Quarantine?

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/yes-is-normal/202005/is-your-sleep-out-whack-now-you-are-in-quarantine

psychologytoday.com

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Key Ideas

The internal clock

All individuals possess what is called 'an internal clock', which has as main purpose to schedule sleep and wakefulness within one entire day of 24 hours.

Now comes the difference in regards to how the 'clock' works for each person: there are people who wake up earlier and go to bed earlier as well - for them the cycle is shorter and there are also people who, on the other hand wake up later and go to sleep later. It all depends, in fact, on what is known as 'zeitgebers', which translates by external signals necessary in order to synchronize the 'clock'.

Get enough sleep in unusual times

Whenever we undergo a change in our daily schedule, our sleep tends to suffer a bit.

Simple facts such as not waking up and going to bed at the usual hour, not getting enough natural light or making less to no exercise can lead to sleep disorders.

Save your sleep

Especially during times of staying only in the house, one needs to make sure that the regular schedule is not too much disturbed, as this can lead, among other issues, to sleep disorders.

A good way to get your normal sleep is by maintaining a regular wake-up and bedtime, even through unusual periods of time. Furthermore, ensuring that your room gets enough natural light, or even better, that you get it, will definitely help. Among other helpful tips there are the fact of giving up on coffee or making as many indoor physical exercises as possible.

The necessity to get a good sleep

There are times, in our life, when we have sleep difficulties for one reason or another.

In order to 'repair' your sleeping disorder, you might want to try whether waking up 15 minutes earlier every couple of days or, on the contrary, going to bed later by two to three hours. However, remember that the most important is to respect and, if possible, give priority to your body preferences. Of course, provided that your working schedule will not be affected.

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The Science of Sleep

The average adult spends 36 % (or about one-third) of his or her life asleep.

Purpose of Sleep:

  • Restoration
  • Memory Consolidation
  • Metabolic Health

Restoration

The first purpose of sleep is restoration.

Every day, your brain accumulates metabolic waste as it goes about its normal neural activities. Sleeping restores the brains healthy condition by removing these waste products. Accumulation of these waste products has been linked to many brain-related disorders.

Memory Consolidation

The second purpose of sleep is memory consolidation.

Sleep is crucial for memory consolidation, which is responsible for your long term memories. Insufficient or fragmented sleep can hamper your ability to remember facts and feelings/emotions.

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The problem with staying up late

Long days can leave us tired and exhausted. But, our days would be less hard and exhausting if we weren't so tired through them.

Most night owls have to wake a similar time to other people...

Learn to love a good night's sleep

When trying to change your sleep habits, don't give up too soon. Keep it up for a week. The days will get easier, and you'll learn to love sleep again.

To get to bed earlier, slow down in the evenings. Read a book rather than engaging with your smartphone or laptop. Listening to music is good too.

Have something to get up for

Schedule something fun or desirable to look forward to in the morning before work. 

It could include coffee, the news, gym or uninterrupted smartphone access.

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Not getting enough sleep

Not getting enough sleep

Now that is an issue most of us face on a daily basis: not getting enough sleep because we are too stressed or paying too much attention to our screens, for different reasons.

The bad news ...

Make believe it is time to go to bed

If you find yourself experiencing issues when trying to fall asleep, you might as well consider making your brain believe that night has come.

In order to do this, you could start using dim table or side lamps instead of bright ones, turning on your phone the so-called 'night mode' or using a mask to cover your face.

The so-called 'sleep debt' and how to fight it

Whenever we fall behind on sleep, most of us have the tendency to try to catch up during weekends. The result is not that good though: it confuses our internal clock and therefore, we tend to feel even more tired afterwards.

So we should actually try waking up and going to bed at the same hours on both weekdays and weekends and building up a regular schedule that suits our needs.