Weddings bring joy and love, but they also come with stress.
And, stress can easily come between you and a full seven hours of sleep.
Unfortunately, you need sleep more than ever as you prepare for your wedding. You can get the rest you need by developing good sleep habits and avoiding substances and activities that interfere with the natural flow of your sleep cycle.
Anytime you get less than seven hours of sleep your body alters the way it functions, which can affect your personal health and relationships.
Lack of sleep causes the emotional processing centre of the brain to become oversensitive and reactive to negative situations and thoughts. Normally, the brain’s logic and reason centre keep these emotions in check. However, during sleep deprivation, the logical part of the brain goes quiet, letting emotions run amok.
Sleep deprivation leads to an increase in hunger hormones and a decrease in satiety hormones. Consequently, appetite goes up as do cravings for foods high in fat and sugar.
Physical Strength and Endurance
Your muscles don’t have enough time to recover from daily stress if you’re not getting enough rest. It also causes slow reaction times, reduced endurance, and strength. Your thinking can also become muddled as the brain doesn’t have time to cleanse itself from daily toxins.
The good news is you can turn the effects of sleep deprivation around by making a commitment to healthy sleep habits.
Sleep Better with Consistency
The human body thrives off of consistency and predictability. There are a few different ways you can use that to your advantage.
Settle on a Bedtime
A regular bedtime helps children fall asleep, but adults can benefit from one too. It allows the brain to anticipate the start of the sleep cycle so it can correctly time the release of sleep hormones.
Build a Good Bedtime Routine
Use the 15 to 30 minutes before your bedtime to release tension and stress before lying down. The time can be used to put your mind at ease by locking windows and doors or checking a baby or security monitor. It can also be used to pamper yourself. Take a warm bath, listen to quiet music, or read a book to help you relax. Perform the activities in the same order each night so the brain will recognize when to start the sleep cycle.
Meals Timing Matters
Your body uses meal timing to help recognize when to begin your sleep cycle. Try to eat at roughly the same time each day and keep your meals evenly spaced. If you can, eat an early, light dinner to prevent sleep-disrupting heartburn or indigestion.
Try to Avoid…
Stimulants: Caffeine and similar stimulants block sleep hormones. Ideally, stop consuming them four hours before bed.
Alcohol: Alcohol can be deceiving because it does make you feel drowsy at first. However, it leads to wakefulness later in your sleep cycle so avoid it in the hours before bed.
Electronics: Laptops, iPads, smartphones, and many other electronic devices emit a bright blue spectrum light that suppresses sleep hormones. Some devices have a night shift mode that changes the spectrum from blue to red, but your safest bet is to avoid these devices two to three hours before bed.
So in essence, sleep will help you enjoy the time leading up to your wedding. You can deepen your relationship with family and friends while planning the event that marks the opening of a new chapter in your life.
For more tips on getting the best night’s sleep go to Tuck.com