- Specialists recommend that adults must sleep from 7 to 9 hours to get optimal rest.
- Duration, continuity, and depth, basic elements for quality in sleeping.
- 45% of the Mexican population has bad quality in their sleep: UNAM.
A person can sleep up to a third of their lifetime. Sleep is a basic need in human beings, such as eating and drinking, it is paramount to our good health and general wellbeing.
Considering the World Sleep Day, Dr. Rodrigo Durán Muñiz, specialist in sleep disorders and Medical Manager of Psychiatry and Central Nervous System at Grupo PiSA, explained that sleeping -as well as exercise and nutrition- is essential in the metabolic regulation of the human body.
“Good quality, restful sleep is basic for our good health. Continuous and deep night rest has a positive impact on the quality of life and optimal functioning of a person; because while we sleep, our tissues regenerate, and we process al the information that we have learned during the day. Thus, consolidating learning and memory, in addition to eh completion of important hormonal cycles”, assured the specialist.
In recent years, sleep disorders have become a worldwide public health issue. In Mexico, information from the Sleep Clinic at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM, for its acronym in Spanish) indicate that approximately 45% of the population in that country suffer from a bad quality in sleep, condition that affects directly in their health and quality of life.
In this context, Duran Muñiz explained that there are three basic elements to have good quality in resting: 1) duration, sleep must be enough for a person to rest and be completely alert the next day; 2) continuity, sleep patterns must be continuous and uninterrupted; and 3) depth, sleep must be deep enough to be restful.
According to the Mayo Clinic, sleep disorders are affections that induce changes in the way we sleep. The most common are insomnia, which consists in the difficulty to fall asleep at night; sleep apnea, which is characterized by abnormal breathing patterns when sleeping; restless leg syndrome, which causes an uncomfortable sensation and an urge to move the legs while trying to sleep; and narcolepsy, which provokes extreme somnolence during the day, causing that the person may fall asleep suddenly, anytime, anywhere.
““Lack of sleep or quality also makes people more vulnerable to accidents. Unlike people who experience a good quality of sleep, those who suffer from insomnia are seven times more likely to be involved in an accident at home, on public roads or while driving; situations that can cause serious injuries or even death”, added Grupo PiSA’s Medical Manager.
Finally, Durán Muñiz shared that sleep disorders can have their origin in the situations that we live daily, for example, carrying a high load of stress at work, having eating habits that involve the consumption of sugars before sleeping or exposing our eyes long hours in front of screens; so the sleep specialist recommends taking actions to reduce these activities and have a better quality of sleep.
“Having good bedtime habits can make a big difference in the quality of our rest, always go to bed at the same time, dim the lights at home, stop using electronic devices for at least a couple of hours before going to sleep, and using our bed only to sleep and not to eat or watch television; these will help our brain to understand that it is time to sleep and rest”, stated Dr. Rodrigo Durán.