Getting a good sleep is very important. An unspoiled slumber can make you more energetic and positive during the day, while a night of tossing and turning can have just the opposite effect.
There are a number of things that can influence how well you sleep, so it’s essential to know all you can about what makes the transition from being awake to sleeping as smooth as possible.
Jurys Inn have released a short animated video that outlines all the factors that can help you get a great night of sleep.
The video covers aspects of diet, such as foods to go for and foods to avoid, as well as when to exercise and how to occupy yourself in the few hours before bedtime to get the perfect sleep.
There is also advice on things like why a hot bath or a warm drink can help infinitely, making it the ideal guide to getting a great sleep.
Over the last week or so we have been publishing interviews with Dr Rob Hicks on the subject of sleep and related issues. The first , which you can read here, looked at the relationship between diabetes and sleep. The second deals with some of the issues surrounding sleep routines for younger children!
In this interview with Dr Hicks we explore sleep disorders, fatigue and relaxation. Vital to such conditions and multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia among others.
PatienTalk.Org: Ok and moving on from there how would you describe or what is sleep apnoea?
Dr Hicks: Well sleep apnoea is a situation which is often associated with snoring. It is a situation where many, many times in the night for short very periods of time the person stops breathing so a bed partner may notice that the person has temporarily stopped breathing for micro seconds and then the person themselves has a bit of a cough or a bit of a deep breath and they may wake up or they may roll over and go back to sleep. One of the problems with obstructive sleep apnoea is actually that it leaves a person not just tired the following day and at greater risk of accidents but it can actually put somebody’s blood pressure up so it is a contributing factor to heart disease and indeed strokes.
PatienTalk.Org:- Are there other major sleep disorders?
Dr Hicks: Well the main sleep disorder that we come across in general practice is insomnia. A lack of good, refreshing sleep and the underlying cause of that can be a physical problem. It might be arthritis causing pain. It might be a side effect of medication that is being taken for a health problem. It might be noise. It might be too much light. It might be an uncomfy bed or it might actually be an awful lot of worry and that is why the “Good night everyone” campaign from Dunelm is working towards trying to help people find the best way for them as an individual and for them as a family to get a good night sleep and so they can work up refreshed in the morning ready to face the challenges of the day.
PatienTalk.Org: I’ve noticed that you have mentioned fatigue and insomnia go hand in hand. Why do you think that is?
Dr Hicks: What we understand by the process of sleep is it’s a way of regenerating and repairing the body. It’s certainly a time where memories are laid down. It’s a time where basically we give the body a chance to get ready for the next day but if you’re not getting an adequate amount of sleep, and the amount of sleep people need varies from individual to individual so for example for adults it ranges on average 7 – 9 hours a night. For someone in a school, a child in school it’s about 10 hours. For somebody in pre-school so before the age you go to school it’s about 10 – 12 hours. If you are not getting adequate amounts of rest and relaxation than a knock on effect is your body is going to be exhausted.
PatienTalk.Org: Finally, can you suggest any relaxation techniques to help you get to sleep?
Dr Hicks: There are lots of good relaxation techniques. There is deep breathing exercises. There is stretching exercises. There is meditation, visualisation lots of different ways of helping the body relax and unwind and get to sleep but the important thing is that an individual person finds something that is relevant and works for them because it’s not a case of one size fits all. Sometimes you have to try a few things before you come across the one that really works for you as an individual.
PatienTalk.Org: Thank you very much for your time Dr Rob Hicks.
Just before Easter we were lucky enough to conduct a wide-ranging interview with Dr Rob Hicks on the subject of sleep. We covered the whole area of diabetes and sleep in a previous post which you can read here.
Today we would like to share with you Dr Hicks’ suggestions on how to get the best night’s sleep for your child.
We asked Dr Hicks as to why children often have difficulty getting to sleep. He replied “Well I think the reasons for children are very similar to those that are adults so when you look at the survey results worrying about something was the major cause of not getting a good night sleep and you have to acknowledge that even children worry about things just like adults do although children tend to worry about different things so it might be the fact that they have had an argument with a friend in school or maybe they have stopped being best friends with somebody , maybe they have exams coming up ins school, maybe they are in secondary school and they have very important exams coming up whereas with adults they tend to worry about money, occupation ,work and relationship problems.”
His advice for a good routine was excellent and very straightforward he feels “the routine is very important whether you are a child or an adult and what we talk about is sleep hygiene mechanism so you have to make sure that somebody is going to bed at the same time every night, that they get up every time every morning and that’s the case of whether it’s a work day, a school day or its day that they have off, to make sure that the bedroom is quiet, that its dark, that the bed and pillow is comfy and that is basically conducive to a good night’s sleep.”