Pushed bedtimes mean the habit of sleeping late at night. These days staying up during late hours has become a fad. People, especially the younger generation prefer staying up late and working or binge-watching movies or TV shows. But this is a highly unhealthy habit. This habit reduces your hours of sleep and the rest that you get while sleeping. Which makes you feel restless the next day. But the effect of the sleep deprivation caused by pushed bedtimes is not limited to just feeling restless. It affects cognitive functions like :
•Lack of sleep causes difficulties in paying attention. Focusing attention becomes a tough task. Feeling tired and restless makes it difficult in focussing on the job given, as it makes you feel drowsy.
•It makes it difficult for you to think creatively, your power to come up with new and original ideas is hampered due to lack of sleep. New ideas become difficult to conceptualize when one is tired or lacks rest.
•Your reactions and reflexes slow down whenever you are sleep deprived which make it very dangerous for you to perform your routine tasks like driving. Studies have shown that your brain cells try to grab the shut-eye they missed out and researches have found that sleep deprivation can make brain cells sluggish and communication slow.
•Lack of sleep causes forgetfulness. It makes it difficult for you to remember things and memories. Poor quality sleep in adults causes memories to stay stuck in the hippocampus and not reach the prefrontal cortex. This results in forgetfulness and difficulty remembering names. Too little restful sleep can also lead to mood changes and anxiety, which in turn contribute to problems with memory.
So what is the solution? How do we fall out of this unhealthy habit?
1. Keep your sleep cycle regular. Don’t sleep at odd hours. Fix a good and healthy time for sleeping, sleep at least a minimum of 7-8 hours a day.
2. Avoid consumption of caffeine or alcohol immediately before your bedtime. Such items make it difficult to sleep as they are known to help people in feeling less drowsy, sleepy and restless.
3. Exercise and workout during the day, so that you are tired enough to fall asleep on time.
4. Don’t take unnecessary naps during the day. Unnecessary naps during the day spoil your sleep cycle as it makes it difficult for you to fall asleep according to your regular sleep cycle.
5. Sleep in a comfortable situation, which is silent, preferably dark and peaceful.
Following these tips and inculcating them into your daily lifestyle can help you in having a healthy sleep cycle. A good and healthy amount of sleep not only helps you in staying healthy, but also improves your immune system, strengthens your memory, helps your focus better, makes you feel less restless and more active, let’s your creative juices flow and improves your overall functioning
These simple steps can get your pushed Bedtimes back on track and restore your cognitive skills back to normal.