If you're still tired after getting your full 8 hours of rest, it's probably due to a poor quality of sleep. Instead of focusing on the number of hours, you should pay attention to how deeply you're sleeping. The truth is that the amount you sleep means nothing if it's not good quality rest.
The 8-hour sleep myth
While 8-hours is a good guideline, there's no hard-and-fast rule about how much you should sleep. This is because everyone's body is different, so naturally everyone has different requirements regarding how much they sleep. If you're sleeping 8 hours but wake frequently, or toss-and-turn, you're not getting the full night's rest you deserve.
Always feeling tired is discouraging
There's nothing worse than exhaustion, but it's especially frustrating when you do everything right but still end up tired. If you get the recommended amount of sleep but still experience fatigue, it's possible you're suffering from a medical condition.
Sleep apnea is an illness most common among adults over 50. It impacts the body's ability to regulate breathing while at rest. Irregular breathing often impacts the sleep cycle, keeping the patient from achieving sufficient REM sleep. If you have sleep apnea, here are a few things do to improve your quality of sleep:
- Medication, such as sleep aids. Consult your physician to find a medication that's right for you.
- CPAP. These are machines used nightly to help regulate breathing during sleep.
- Lifestyle changes. Often times, weight loss can reverse the symptoms of sleep apnea.
Anemia impacts how blood is processed through your body. If you're feeling tired, dizzy, and weak, your doctor can check for anemia through a simple blood test. If you're anemic and suffering from fatigue, here are a few things that can help:
- Keep a regular sleep schedule.
- Avoid black tea. This can hinder your body's ability to absorb iron.
- Make a few life changes. Eat iron-rich foods, increase your vitamin C intake, make appropriate changes to your sleep environment.
Depression is a mental illness that, at times, causes people to sleep more frequently. Severe cases of depression have also been known to lead to cases of EDS. If you suffer from depression that is leaves you fatigued during the daytime, there are a few things that you can try:
- Medication, such as antidepressants.
- Change your sleep environment. Simple things, such as reducing background noise, finding new curtains, or replacing your mattress can go a long way to improving the quality of your sleep.
- Lifestyle changes. If you suffer from depression, you should avoid alcohol and other substances. Other factors, such as maintaining a regular sleep schedule and avoiding sugar/caffeine before bed, will go a long way toward finding a more restful sleep.
Other medical conditions
In addition, there are other medical conditions that can leave you feeling fatigued despite getting enough sleep at night.
- Hyperthyroidism is a disease in which too much thyroid hormone is produced. This can impact whether you feel tired during the day, but is manageable through medication. It is easily diagnosable through a blood test, and can be managed through medication.
- Diabetes is a disease that impacts your body's insulin production. Insulin has a direct impact on your body's ability to process energy, so people suffering from diabetes often report feeling fatigued. However, diabetes is manageable through a combination of medication and proper diet and exercise.
- Hepatitis impacts your liver's ability to process proteins. It is diagnosable by your doctor and can be managed, and cured, through medication.
If you're tired, get better sleep!
It doesn't matter how much you're sleeping if you're not sleeping through the night! But there are several small lifestyle changes you can make to improve the quality of your sleep and get the rest you deserve.
- Put down the screen(s). This is an easy and fundamental change! Charge your phone in the living room. Keep your computer out of the bedroom. Close your devices at least one hour before bed. There is scientific evidence that the light from your screen impacts your sleep. You'll be surprised how much of a difference this makes!
- Stick with a set bedtime. Sometimes it's harder than it seems, but just do it. Your body depends on a steady sleep schedule, and making that appointment with yourself improves your quality of sleep.
- Get a new mattress. Maybe your bed isn't as comfortable as it once was? We don't think about our mattresses often, but it's important to find one that suits our body. A new mattress is an easy fix that helps you sleep more deeply.
- Change your eating habits. Alcohol, sugar, caffeine: all of these keep you up at night and prevent you from sleeping deeply.
How the right mattress improves your sleep
It's important realize how much impact your mattress has on your quality of sleep. Is it old? Is it worn down? Do you find yourself tossing and turning to get comfortable? Your body has likely changed in the years since you bought it, so it may be time to consider a new mattress for the new you.
The #1 Best Mattress For Restful Sleep
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