Quiz Time

An­swer these ques­tions so you can iden­tify poor sleep pat­terns or symp­toms and seek treat­ment.

Health & Nutrition - - CONTENTS -

Check out your sleep pat­terns

Most peo­ple know that sleep is an im­por­tant part of good health. But not every­one is as well versed on how to get those cov­eted Z’s. Peo­ple who get less sleep are more likely to de­velop obe­sity, di­a­betes, high blood pres­sure, and heart dis­ease. Peo­ple who sleep less don’t live as long as peo­ple who sleep more too. Do you know how to get more sleep? See if you can an­swer the fol­low­ing ques­tions cor­rectly. If you rec­og­nize un­healthy sleep pat­terns or have fur­ther ques­tions, be sure to fol­low up with your doc­tor.

Is Snor­ing A Health Risk?

Pos­si­bly. Up to 60% of the pop­u­la­tion has a par­tially nar­rowed air­way that causes snor­ing. Snor­ing alone doesn’t pose a health risk, but it can sig­nal other health prob­lems. For ex­am­ple, snor­ing may be a sign of ob­struc­tive sleep ap­nea – pauses in breath­ing dur­ing sleep caused by a fre­quently closed air­way. Warn­ing signs in­clude non-rest­ful sleep; gasp­ing for breath dur­ing sleep; wak­ing up with a headache, dry mouth, or sore throat; or in­creased blood pres­sure. Sleep ap­nea puts peo­ple at risk for a stroke and re­quires treat­ment.

Are Day­time Naps Help­ful?

Some­times. Day­time naps can help peo­ple feel rested, es­pe­cially if they have a hard time sleep­ing at night. But getting too much sleep in the day or nap­ping too close to bed­time may ac­tu­ally hin­der night­time sleep. What’s the so­lu­tion? Take a nap in the midafter­noon, but don’t sleep longer than 40 min­utes.

Snor­ing may be a sign of ob­struc­tive sleep ap­nea – pauses in breath­ing dur­ing sleep caused by a fre­quently closed air­way. Warn­ing signs in­clude non-rest­ful sleep; gasp­ing for breath dur­ing sleep; wak­ing up with a headache, dry mouth, or sore throat; or in­creased blood pres­sure.

Other­wise, it can in­ter­fere with your abil­ity to go to sleep later. But if you feel so sleepy you can’t drive, take a nap im­me­di­ately.

Do We Need Less Sleep As We Age?

No, that’s a myth. We ac­tu­ally need about the same amount of sleep through­out adult­hood. What does change is our abil­ity to get con­tin­u­ous sleep and to reach deeper sleep stages. Sleep be­comes more frag­mented, and it takes a lit­tle longer to get the same amount of sleep. Getting at least seven hours of sleep per night is rec­om­mended. It’s okay to wake up pe­ri­od­i­cally, as long as you wake re­freshed in the morn­ing and you’re not sleepy through­out the day.

Can Ex­er­cis­ing Im­prove Sleep?

Yes. We find that ex­er­cise helps peo­ple sleep bet­ter, as long as it’s not within two hours of sleep. Ex­er­cise is stim­u­lat­ing and can cause you to be awake and alert if you ex­ert your­self right be­fore bed­time.

Does Al­co­hol Help You Sleep?

No. Al­co­hol may make you fall asleep faster, but that ef­fect wears off, and there­after al­co­hol dis­rupts sleep. Sleep qual­ity is poorer, and you wake up feel­ing worse. If you do have a drink in the evening, make sure it’s at least three or four hours be­fore bed­time.

Is In­som­nia Com­mon?

Yes. Stud­ies show that 30% to 40% of peo­ple will have sig­nif­i­cant in­som­nia symp­toms at some point in their lives. Al­most every­one will, at some point, ex­pe­ri­ence dis­rup­tion from a busy and stress­ful life. Ad­dress short-term sleep prob­lems (see ‘Tips for a bet­ter night’s rest’) on your own ini­tially. If sleep doesn’t im­prove, see your doc­tor.

Is There Re­ally A Sleep Debt?

Yes. If you cur­tail sleep a lit­tle each night, the ef­fect builds up. For ex­am­ple, if you miss two hours of sleep per night dur­ing the week, you’d need to get an ex­tra 10 hours on the week­end to make up that 10-hour sleep debt.

Ex­er­cise helps bet­ter, peo­ple sleep not as long as it’s of within two hours is sleep. Ex­er­cise can stim­u­lat­ing and be cause you to awake­and alert if you ex­ert be­fore your­self right bed­time.

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