March 19 2010 is Third Annual World Sleep Day

March 19th, 2010 - 11:17 pm ICT by Angela Kaye Mason  

Mar 19 (THAINDIAN NEWS) When my boss messaged me with this assignment “btw today is world sleep day … do a story on it…” I laughed to myself and thought,”Well this could take a few hours of research…” of course I didn’t share those thoughts with my boss, but instead went right to work, sharing them with you. Turns out he was right, as always, today marks the third annual World Sleep Day.

According to the WORLDSLEEPDAY website, the international event is intended to be not only a celebration of sleep, but is also meant to bring awareness of issues related to sleep, such as medicines, education, social aspects and driving. The slogan for this year’s World Sleep Day is “Sleep Well Stay Healthy.”The event is sponsored by the World Association of Sleep Medicine or WASM. They are a group which is made up of sleep medicine experts from all over the world.

It is estimated that one third of all adults suffer from clinically recognized insomnia, and 80 other sleep disorders. This causes significant health risks, and is very detrimental to the well-being of a person. Conditions such as high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, and many other chronic ailments occur when a person does not sleep enough, which is at least 6 hours a night. Up to 45% of the world’s population is estimated to suffer from some type of sleep deprivation. The evidence shows that this can have a very bad effect on endocrine, metabolic, cognitive, restorative, and immune system functions.

There are 10 Commandments of Sleep, which are meant to be a common sense guide to resting enough.

1. Fix a bedtime and an awakening time.
2. Limit daytime naps to 30-45 minutes.
3. Avoid excessive alcohol 4 hours before bedtime and do not smoke.
4. Avoid caffeine 6 hours before bedtime. This includes coffee, tea and many sodas, as well as chocolate.
5. Avoid heavy, spicy, or sugary foods 4 hours before bedtime. A light snack before bed is acceptable.
6. Exercise regularly, but not right before bed.
7. Use comfortable bedding.
8. Find a comfortable temperature setting for sleeping and keep the room well ventilated.
9. Block out all distracting noise and eliminate as much light as possible.
10. Reserve the bed for sleep and lovemaking. Don’t use the bed as an office, workroom or recreation room.

There are translations of these commandments in many languages available on the site. www.worldsleepday.org.

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