The Importance of Sleep 

The importance of sleep and its effect on the body and mind is common knowledge, however, few are aware of the specific outcomes that can be a consequence of not getting enough sleep, as well as what actually constitutes as enough sleep. 

When we sleep, it allows vital parts of our body recuperate, such as our muscles and even our bones. The same goes for our brains, whilst some parts of the brain are more active when asleep than when conscious, the majority of the brain shuts down piece by piece as we slowly enter what is referred to as slow-wave sleep (SWS) which is more commonly known as ‘deep sleep’, in which all muscles are relaxed and we take deep slow breaths. During this time our brains are flushed if any toxins produced throughout the day and allowed time to recover in anticipation of the next day. But, if we are not allowing ourselves enough sleep then we aren’t allowing our brains enough time to fully recover, therefore the next day our brains won’t work at full capacity, this seems obvious enough, however what is rarely highlighted is the damage done to the brain if we are consistently not allowing enough resting time.

When the brain is sleep deprived, it doesn’t get the chance to flush out all of its toxins, this can lead to the brains ability to form new memories becoming impaired, and in some cases can lead to the development of Alzheimer’s disease. A lack of sleep also greatly affects ones mood, which again is linked to the brain losing cognitive function and an increase in stress due to a lack of rest. It is for these reasons that it is important to introduce a consistent nighttime routine to your day, follow the link below to see how to develop an effective nighttime routine. As well as this, consistently going to bed and getting out of bed at similar times allows the body and mind more familiarity regarding sleep, resulting in more SWS sleep and less REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, better known as ‘light sleep’.