Updated: Oct 25, 2022
Sleep is release from day’s fatigue. Day is to work , night is to sleep, rest and relax. Don’t carry your work into night. Sleep is necessary for the body just as food is. It is important for your physical and mental health. It is during sleep that body does lot of repair and maintenance work and prepares you for next day’s work. If you have slept well, you wake up refreshed and rejuvenated.
How much sleep is needed?
Will differ from person to person. But for an ordinary adult 7 hours is sufficient. Less than that on regular basis will pose health problems. Again it is not the quantity of time but quality of sleep that is important. For Yogis even four hour is sufficient as their sleep is very deep and profound. It is not a right method to try to keep awake at night; the suppression of the needed sleep makes the body tamasik and unfit for the necessary concentration during the waking hours - says Maharshi Aurobindo. Foolishly we have believed that work, work and work is the way to grow and thus we keep awake till late in night. It is not the work but quality of work on which your progress depends. While you work long, you create most ordinary, rather substandard stuff. And in the process invite various lifestyle diseases- hypertension, heart disease, diabetes etc. Rise in lifestyle diseases despite medical advances is a proof that the way we live is not in sink with the nature. So don’t compromise on your sleep. Lack of sleep results in weakened immunity. Your chances of catching diseases increase. Again it causes dullness, headache , burning sensation in eyes, body ache and disturbance in bowel movement .
Some important tips about sleep.
Don’t go to bed immediately after food. Even coffee 4/5 hours before your bed time will disturb your sleep.
It is good going to bed early and rise early.
Some physical activity/ movement/ gymming/ swimming/ yoga is essential for a sound sleep. We all know how deep is the sleep of a labourer who works manually whole day. Or we can remember our own experience when we were tired physically, how deep was our sleep. If you can, take a light walk after your dinner, may be only for 10/15 minutes, but it will improve quality of your sleep and also bowl movement.
Sleeping place should be airy, pure and clean. Your bed room as such should be perfectly clean ( no clutter) and painted in light natural colours. Your room temperature should be soothing, not too hot nor too cool.
One should read holy books or scriptures before sleeping. Or you can read some motivating and mood uplifting books and literature. Switch your TV, phones half an hour before going to bed.
Keeping ones head in east or south direction one should lie down on left side of the bed with knee over knee. While lying down one should inhale through right nostril, as it is warm current of the body that induces sleep faster. You should lie down with whole body completely loose and relaxed as if it is a cotton rag. Use clean mattress and sheets rather sleep on a coarse bed. Don’t cover your face while sleeping and never sleep with socks on .
Remember God or your chosen Deity while lying down on the bed.
Healthline suggests following on sleep
Why am I tired during the day?
If you’re tired but can’t sleep once the sun sets, it could be a sign of delayed sleep phase disorder. If not that, it could be something else or a combination of things.
Below are some reasons why you might constantly be tired, especially during the day.
Naps aren’t inherently bad. In fact, napping has several health benefits. However, the wrong nap strategy can keep you up when you should be getting deeper Zzz’s.
ResearchTrusted Source suggests that long naps and napping later in the afternoon can cause you to take longer to fall asleep at night, sleep poorly, and wake up more during the night.
Winter recommends keeping naps 20–30 minutes long, and napping at the same time every day so your body can anticipate it.
A racing mind isn’t conducive to peacefully nodding off.
No wonder sleep disturbance is a diagnostic symptom for some anxiety disorders, which older research says 24 to 36 percentTrusted Source of people with insomnia also have.
Anxiety also leads to increased arousal and alertness, which can delay sleep even further.
According to a reviewTrusted Source published in 2019, up to 90 percent of people diagnosed with depression also complain about their sleep quality.
Insomnia, narcolepsy, sleep disordered breathing, and restless legs syndrome were all reported.
The relationship between sleep issues and depression is complicated. It appears to disrupt circadian rhythms.
Inflammation, changes in brain chemicals, genetic factors, and more may all affect the sleep-depression relationship.
Maybe it’s time to reconsider that afternoon latte or energy drink.
On average, caffeine has a half-life of 5 hours. It may be no surprise, then, that research suggests that even 200 milligrams (mg) of caffeine — about 16 ounces of brewed coffee — 16 hours before bed may impact your sleep.
A 2013 study reported that downing 400 mg of caffeine 6 hours or less before bed had significant effects on sleep disturbance. Winter recommends cutting off caffeine consumption 4–6 hours before bedtime.
5. Screen time
Put down the smartphone! The blue lightemitted from phones, tablets, laptops, and TV screens suppresses evening melatonin production and decreases sleepiness.
Winter recommends ceasing the use of any devices 2 hours before bed. You may also consider wearing blue-light blocking glasses at night.
6. Other sleep disorders
Delayed sleep phase syndrome isn’t the only disorder that can make you sleepy but not tired at night.
Sleep apnea and restless legs syndrome can do the same. In sleep apnea, breathing repeatedly stops or is very shallow, then starts again. With restless legs syndrome, your legs feel uncomfortable, triggering you to want to move them.
Both conditions can disrupt nighttime sleep, which then causes daytime sleepiness.
The connection between diet and sleep is a bit unclear.
In a 2019 studyTrusted Source, researchers looked at excessive daytime sleepiness and diet. They found that replacing 5 percent of one’s daily caloric intake from protein with equal amounts of saturated fats or carbs increased risk of daytime sleepiness.
On the other hand, replacing saturated fats with unsaturated fats, protein, or carbs reduced the risk of excessive daytime sleepiness.
They conclude that dietary changes may help people with sleep disorders.
A 2016 review found that high-fat diets were associated with less REM sleep, more deep sleep, and increased arousal from sleep. High-carb intakes were associated with more REM sleep, less deep sleep, and falling asleep faster.
However, the study’s authors say more research is necessary to determine if any one eating pattern promotes or impairs nighttime sleep and daytime energy.
Yogic Technique for deep relaxation - Savasana
Lie down with hands little away from the torso, palms facing upward in slightly curled way, feet 12-18 inches apart but on the mat, shoulder and neck area completely relaxed.
Make sure that during the entire duration your body remains immobile, unmoved - that is the crux of the practice.
Close your eyes.
Take attention to your toes then progressively moving up to ankles, calf muscle, knees, thighs, groin, hands and arms, stomach, chest, neck, chin, nose, eyes, forehead and skull. Do it slowly and in a relaxed manner, feeling that the particular portion where your attention is getting slowly slowly relaxed.
When you are done, turn to your right and with the support of your hand get up and when you feel like you can open your eyes.
It is deeply relaxing and rejuvenating asana.
Makes your breathing calm, deep and rhythmic.
Blood pressure, heart rate slows down.
Supplies energy to all the deficient parts, organs of the body.
Heals frayed nerves.
Strengthens para sympathetic nervous system.
Make the mind cool, calm and relaxed.