World Sleep Day fell on March 18 this year, but the whole month of March is all about sleep habits. That’s why we sat down with some experts to find out how to optimise our sleep schedules: EIC Maria spoke with our resident wellness advisor and Stay Tuned founder & Osteopath Dr Paul Hermann as well as Ora Health founder Gabriel Perera on an upcoming episode of the Casper Podcast, but if you’re looking to get a head start on your sleep habits, here’s a sneak peek at some of their tips!
In their annual report, the Australia Sleep Foundation revealed that nearly 60% of Australians experience elements of sleep disruption at least three times a week, meaning almost two thirds of Aussies aren’t sleeping as well as they could. We all know sleep is integral for our health, wellness, and productivity, so how can we make sure we’re giving our bodies the rest they deserve?
Good sleep is so critical to our health, in particular our body’s in-built mental and physiological repair processes. Research continues to pile up demonstrating that insufficient or poor-quality sleep can have a variety of adverse health outcomes: from increased susceptibility to the common cold right through to increased risk of cardiovascular disease. Equally importantly: if we want to think and remember well, we must sleep well.
Two of the most obvious changes you can make to your nightly routine to sleep better are also, for many of us, two of the hardest things to stay away from: caffeine and screens. The Australian Sleep Health Foundation recommends avoiding caffeine for at least five hours before you intend to go to sleep, which means decaf coffee in the afternoons!
As for screens, that’s a tough one in this day and age – most of us are accustomed to using our computers, tablets, or phones directly before going to sleep, but this de-regulates your circadian rhythm as well as your hormones, making dopamine and cortisol spike and keeping you awake and restless longer. Winding down in the evening with a book, a craft, or audio entertainment is the best way to go to get your sleep schedule on track.
Caffeine or screen-time might not be a problem for you, but there are a lot of factors that can affect your sleep patterns – whether it’s physical activity, an over-active brain, or a problem with your sleeping space, there are a lot more ways to optimise (or fix) your sleep schedule than avoiding coffee and phones. To learn more about sleep habits, stay tuned for our podcast with Gabriel Perera and Dr Paul Hermann – coming soon!
For more health products follow Ora Health @orahealthau
and for more health tips and advice follow Dr Paul Hermann @paul.osteo.staytuned
In the meantime, why not check out our other wellness podcasts?