Do you know sleep is a form of self care? It is not a luxury but a necessity and something grossly underestimated. Sleep is crucial for maintaining overall health and well-being. It plays a vital role in various aspects of our physical, mental, and emotional functioning. Sleep used to be so difficult for me. Bordering on insomnia, I often resorted to pills to catch some shut eye. But over the years, that changed with the help of mindfulness and meditation. Today I want to share (at the risk of repeating myself ) some reasons why sleep is important. Also we discuss tips to get good sleep, food and supplements that aid in sleeping better, sleep positions, why recliners could be a good idea in some situations, what to look for if you are shopping for best recliners for comfortable sleeping etc.
8 Reasons Why Sleep is Important
- Restores and rejuvenates the body: During sleep, the body undergoes important restorative processes. It repairs tissues, synthesizes hormones, and strengthens the immune system. Sleep allows the body to recover and prepare for the next day.
- Supports brain function: Sleep is essential for cognitive processes such as memory consolidation, learning, problem-solving, and creativity. It helps solidify new information and enhances mental clarity, concentration, and productivity.
- Emotional well-being: Sufficient sleep is linked to improved emotional regulation and mental health. Lack of sleep can contribute to mood swings, increased irritability, anxiety, and a higher risk of developing mental health disorders like depression.
- Physical performance and energy levels: Adequate sleep enhances athletic performance, coordination, and reaction time. It also plays a role in muscle repair and growth. Insufficient sleep can lead to decreased physical performance, reduced stamina, and impaired coordination.
- Hormonal balance: Sleep is intricately linked with hormone regulation. It helps maintain a healthy balance of hormones, including those involved in appetite regulation (leptin and ghrelin), stress response (cortisol), and growth and development (growth hormone). Disrupted sleep patterns can lead to hormonal imbalances, which can have a wide range of effects on the body.
- Immune system function: Sleep is crucial for a healthy immune system. It supports the production of immune cells and antibodies, which help protect the body against infections and diseases. Lack of sleep weakens the immune system, making individuals more susceptible to illnesses.
- Improved cardiovascular health: Sufficient sleep is associated with a lower risk of developing cardiovascular diseases like heart disease, high blood pressure, and stroke. It helps regulate blood pressure, reduce inflammation, and promote heart health.
- Overall quality of life: Consistently getting enough sleep enhances overall quality of life by promoting physical health, mental well-being, and daytime alertness. It contributes to better decision-making, improved relationships, and increased productivity.
It’s important to prioritize good sleep habits and aim for the recommended amount of sleep for your age group, typically ranging from 7 to 9 hours for adults.
4 Calming Tips to Help You Sleep in Minutes
Many people struggle with negative thoughts consuming them immediately upon laying in bed. If you’re one of them trying to find ways to kick negative thoughts before sleep, then continue reading for 4 Calming Tips to Help You Sleep in Minutes by getting a better handle on your negative thoughts
Avoid Negative Language
One hour before bed refrain from using any negative language. Common examples of negative language would start with things like “It’s all my fault” or “I hate this thought”. When you make a conscious switch in your mindset one hour before bed, you’ll be more prepared to kick negative thoughts before sleeping. This process helps train your mind to focus on other positives in life prior to laying down.
Go To Sleep Earlier
Bye bye Netflix!
Various research has shown that those who go to sleep at a later time in the day tend to struggle with negative thoughts before sleeping. Consider switching up your bedtime routine to include an earlier bedtime. While you’re an adult and may think “having a bedtime” is silly, believe me, this step to commit to going to sleep earlier will surely help those negative thoughts stay at bay so you can sleep.
Use Self-Guided Meditation
Many people have used self-guided meditation apps before they lay down to sleep. You may incorporate this new option into your bedtime routine. Combined with going to sleep earlier, practice some meditation via a free self-guided meditation app on your smartphone. This will help you relax your mind and in turn, you’ll slip off into slumber easier without negative thoughts.
Enjoy Some Music
Many people who suffer from negative thoughts before sleeping has found using music has helped them fall asleep easier. You may purchase an MP3 player or use your smartphone with a timer set so that you won’t be wasting electricity playing music all night long. Music has been known to be very therapeutic for people who suffer from negative, anxious thoughts before sleeping.
There are many tools people try to use as a means to kick negative thoughts before sleeping. What you can do is try each of the tips to help you sleep I shared today to see which ones or combination of ideas are most helpful. And then use those ideas or a combination of them to stop those thoughts from creeping in as you lay down to fall asleep. I hope that these tips on how to sleep better at night naturally help you stay sane and refreshed. Let these relaxation techniques before bed minimize the noise in your head so you can set off to a night of restful sleep again soon.
5 Natural Tips to Sleep for Insomniac
But if you are an insomniac, these tips are not really going to help all that much. Lack of sleep over time is not good for your health for sure. Getting prescriptions or going for over the counter even has some side effects which you do not want to be bothered with. If you are into natural remedies, trying out some of these might help.
These days aromatherapy has been proven to be one of the safest ways to use as a sleep aid. Lavender essential oil is #1 recommended. You can put lavender on your toes, make a spray to mist your pillow with or take a nice warm lavender bath.
Food and Diet
Most of us these days are always in a hurry when it comes to meal time and our diet.So try and limit your caffeine. It can have a pronounced effect on sleep, causing insomnia and restlessness. Sugar is another big one as it can disrupt sleep in the middle of the night as blood sugar levels fall.Try eating foods rich in magnesium like legumes and seeds, dark leafy green vegetables, wheat bran, almonds, cashews.
This is the best form of exercise before bed that will help your system to relax. It is very healing as well. Its worth your time to pick a quiet place 30 mins before bed.
Beside a lavender bath this is another one of my favorites. In herbal tea, my go to is chamomile but any of the Sleepy Time teas are great.
Magnesium is well known for its ability to relieve insomnia. It also helps muscles to relax, to give you that calm “sleepy” feeling and help you unwind after a long day.Magnesium works just like a charm start with the lowest dose. First talk to your pharmacist and see what mg may work best for you.
I have only tried herbal tea and food and diet from this list to be honest. And it has helped me to a certain extent in my battle against insomnia. As long as you are able to find ways that work for you (except prescriptions and such), sleeplessness is something you could tame and bring under control in the long run.
Hope you find these five natural remedies for insomnia useful and apply them one way or the other in your fight against it.
Sleep positions can have an impact on your sleep quality particularly after a long day. While there is no one-size-fits-all sleep position that works for everyone, certain positions offer specific benefits and considerations. Here are some common sleep positions and their effects:
- Back sleeping: Sleeping on your back with proper pillow support can help maintain the natural alignment of your spine and reduce the risk of developing neck and back pain. It also minimizes the likelihood of facial wrinkles and acid reflux. However, some individuals may experience snoring or worsened sleep apnea symptoms in this position.
- Side sleeping: Sleeping on your side, particularly the left side, can alleviate snoring and reduce the risk of sleep apnea. This position also helps keep the airways open and may be beneficial for individuals with acid reflux. However, side sleeping can sometimes lead to shoulder and hip pain if proper support is not provided.
- Stomach sleeping: Sleeping on your stomach can help reduce snoring. However, this position can strain the neck and spine, leading to discomfort and potential alignment issues. It may not be ideal for individuals with back or neck pain.
Optimal Sleep Positions Tips
It’s important to find a sleep position that is comfortable for you and allows you to maintain a neutral spinal alignment. Additionally, consider the following tips for optimal sleep positions:
- Use a supportive pillow: Choose a pillow that adequately supports your neck and head, keeping them aligned with your spine. The pillow should fill the gap between your neck and the mattress when lying on your back or side.
- Mattress firmness: Select a mattress that offers the right level of firmness or softness, depending on your comfort preferences and any underlying health conditions you may have.
- Body pillow: If you’re a side sleeper, placing a pillow between your knees can help maintain proper alignment and reduce strain on the hips and lower back.
- Avoid excessive bending or twisting of joints: Ensure that your sleep position doesn’t involve extreme bending or twisting of joints, as this can lead to discomfort or strain.
Individual preferences and any underlying health conditions can influence the choice of sleep position. It’s important to prioritize comfort, proper spinal alignment, and any specific considerations recommended by your healthcare provider.
Best Recliners for Comfortable Sleeping in 2023
Sleeping on recliners in your living room can have both positive and negative effects on your body. Its one thing to own a cool power lift recliner with cup holders, side pockets and all the bells and whistles to spend some sleep hours, there are some important factors to consider:
- Comfort: Recliners can provide a comfortable sleeping position for some people, especially if they have specific health conditions such as acid reflux or sleep apnea or even body weight The adjustable positions allow you to find a suitable angle that supports your body and reduces discomfort.
- Back and Neck Support: Recliners often provide better lumbar (lower back) support compared to regular beds. They can alleviate pressure on your spine, reducing back pain. However, it’s important to ensure that the recliner you choose offers proper support for your neck and head as well.
- Circulation: Prolonged periods of sitting in a reclined position can impede blood circulation. If you sleep for an extended time in a recliner, it may lead to numbness, tingling, or swollen legs and feet. Regularly changing positions or taking breaks can help mitigate this issue.
- Sleep Quality: While recliners can be comfortable for short periods of rest, they may not provide the same level of sleep quality as a proper bed. The upright or semi-reclined position may not allow you to enter deep sleep stages, which are essential for overall restorative rest.
- Potential Risks: Some recliners may have a hard surface or inadequate padding, which can cause pressure points, discomfort, and potential skin issues if used for extended periods. Additionally, sleeping in a recliner can increase the risk of falls, especially if you tend to move around during sleep.
It’s worth noting that individual preferences and health conditions can greatly influence whether sleeping on a recliner is beneficial for you. If you have specific concerns or conditions in looking for a perfect sleep chair or best recliners currently out in the market, it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional who can provide personalized advice based on your needs.
Which Recliner is best for sleeping?
When it comes to choosing a comfortable recliner or a sleeping recliner, personal preference plays a significant role to attain a comfortable position. It is ideally the perfect choice and outcome. However, there are a few key factors to consider to ensure comfort and functionality. Here are some features to look for when selecting best recliner chairs for daily catnap, good night’s sleep and comfy chair experience:
- Reclining Positions: Look for a good recliner that offers multiple perfect position when it comes to reclining, including a fully flat or near-flat position. This means an ergonomic chair qualities, comfortable seat, great lumbar support/hardwood frame or steel frame etc for maximum comfort. This will allow you to find the most comfortable angle for sleeping. Manual recliners are also a good option where you can adjust positions when needed.
- Adjustable Headrest and Footrest: Opt for stylish recliners with adjustable headrests and footrest, as these features enable you to customize the positioning to your liking and provide adequate support for your head, neck, and legs. Seat width, high back, standing position, rocking recliner with the touch of a button or push of a button all comes into play when considering a type of recliner.
- Cushioning and Padding: Consider the quality and thickness of the cushioning and padding. A plush and supportive recliner will offer better comfort for sleeping.
- Material: Choose a recliner with a breathable and comfortable upholstery material, such as leather or fabric. Ensure it’s easy to clean and maintain as well.
- Size and Space: Assess the dimensions of the recliner and make sure it fits well in your living space. Consider both the reclined and upright positions to ensure it accommodates your body size comfortably.
- Additional Features: Some recliners offer extra features like remote control capability, built-in massage function, heating elements, or USB port. While these are not necessary for sleeping, they can add to your overall relaxation and convenience.
It’s advisable to visit furniture stores and try out different recliners to assess their comfort, support, and functionality. Remember, what works for one person may not work for another, so finding the best recliner for sleeping is ultimately subjective to individual preferences and medical condition.
That being said I am sharing some of the top picks for a reclining chair or power recliner that could be a great option for you in aiding with your sleep routine or sleep habits. Here are a few recliners that have been highly rated for some time now.
- La-Z-Boy Recliners: La-Z-Boy is a well-known and trusted brand in the recliner market. They offer a wide range of styles, including traditional, contemporary, and modern designs. Their recliners are known for their comfort and durability.
- Ekornes Stressless Recliners: Stressless recliners are renowned for their ergonomic design and comfort features. They often include adjustable headrests, lumbar support, and glide systems for smooth reclining. They are available in various sizes and styles.
- Human Touch Perfect Chair Recliners: Human Touch specializes in zero-gravity recliners that aim to provide optimal relaxation and stress relief. These chairs are designed to mimic the position of astronauts during takeoff to reduce spinal pressure and improve circulation.
- Best Home Furnishings Recliners: Best Home Furnishings offers a wide range of recliners with different styles and features. They focus on providing both comfort and aesthetics, allowing you to find a recliner that suits your preferences and home decor.
- Catnapper Recliners: Catnapper is known for its sturdy construction and plush comfort. Their recliners often include features like power reclining, massage functions, and built-in cup holders.
Signature Design by Ashley Markridge Modern Electric Power Lift Recliner
This one has great reviews and bonus? It is on Amazon as well. These are the top benefits if you choose to go this route.
- POWER LIFT RECLINER: When it comes to exceptional comfort and style, this power lift recliner is right on the mark. Single motor lift recliner with 40″ high back has you covered from head to toe
- MODERN MARVEL: Lift recliner includes one touch (hand control) power button with adjustable positions. Emergency battery backup runs on two 9-volt batteries (not included), in case of power outage
- TRANSITIONAL STYLE: Feel-good polyester/nylon/cotton fabric is sure to blend beautifully in your space. Clean, transitional styling looks equally at home alongside contemporary and traditional furniture
- SOFA SIDEKICK: Great next to a sofa or loveseat, recliners are the way to go. Measuring 34.5 D x 30.5 W x 40.25 H inches, this recliner offers just enough room to lounge. Power cord included
- MINOR ASSEMBLY: Simply install easy-off chair back with a screwdriver (not included) and your recliner is ready to enjoy.
Consider factors such as your personal preferences, budget, available space, ease of use and specific features you’re looking for when choosing a recliner. It’s also advisable to visit local furniture stores to try out different models and determine which one feels the most comfortable and supportive to you.
I hope this post will be useful to you in getting your sleep back on track and aid you in making informed decisions should you choose to buy a sleep recliner!