Are You Getting all the ZZZs You Need?

Does it often take you more the 30 minutes to fall asleep at night? Or do you wake frequently during the night---or too early in the morning---and have a hard time going back to sleep? When you awaken, do you feel groggy and lethargic? Do you feel drowsy during thd day particularly during monotonous situations?

If you answered "yes" to any one of these questions, you may have a "sleep debt" that is affecting you in ways you don't even realize. Few recognize the importance of adequate rest, or are even aware that effective methods of preventing and managing sleep problems now exist.

Sleep is not merely a "time out" from our busy routines; it is essential for good health, mental and emotional functioning and safety. For instance, researchers have found that people with chronic insomnia are more likely than others to develop several kinds of psychiatric problems and are also likely to make greater use of helathcare sesrvices. These same people generally have high blood pressue, an suffer from excessive daytine sleepiness.

Even occasional sleeping problems can make daily life feel more stressful or cause you to be less productive. This can make it harder to concetrate, accomplish required tasks, and handle minor irritations.Overall, sleep loss has been found to impair the ability to perform tasks involvoing memory, learning, and logical reasoning, which can contribute to mistakes or unfulfilled potential at school or on the job and strained relationships at hoe.

Insufficient sleep can also be dangerous, leading to serious or even fatal accidents.

HOW MUCH SLEEP IS ENOUGH? SLeep needs vary. On average, healthy adults need 8 hours of sleep a night. Some adults can function on 6 hours of sleep while others need a full 10 hours of sleep. How do you know how much sleep yu truly need? If you have trouoble staying awake during boring or monotonous situations when fatigue if often "unmasked" youy probably aren't getting enough good-quality sleep.

Getting enough sleep without interruptions from your environment or from internal factors is more likely to result in restful and restorative sleep.

Certain individuals may be particularly vulnerable. This includes students, shiuft workers, travelers, as well as those sufferring stress, depression, or chronic pain.

Being overweight increases teh risk for sleep apnea.