Friday, October 31, 2014

Price we pay for not sleeping

I admit it--I have a Teddy Bear.
They say that the (ahem) older people sleep less. I sure do! I have always been a spotty sleeper--couple of hours, wake up, then back, tossing around through the night.

Now daylight savings is ending. We don't go on it in Arizona, but we do have to adjust our thinking--our East Coast buds are now only two hours later, the cable shows are one hour later.

From oldies to tots, not sleeping exacts a toll. Sleep is when the body restores itself, hormones adjust, memories are solidified and the whole immune system is set in place anew.

Sleep loss in adults accumulates--and can lead to heart disease, diabetes, high BP, depression, and of course, our favorite, obesity.

The National Sleep Foundation recommends:

16 hours for infants
12-14 hours for toddlers (1-3)
11-13 hours for preschool (3-5)
10-11 hours for school age (5-12)
8.5-9.5 hrs for teens
7-9 hours for Adults

I am doomed. I get about 5-6 hours, all broken up.

I don't perform vigorous exercise within 4 hours of bedtime, I don't use a phone or tablet, I avoid medications. I do listen to audiobooks in the dark when not feeling sleepy--eventually, I drop off.

If I don't, I just "rest."

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