Secrets of sleep. It is not only for your body, but it is also for your brain.

Feeling worn out with work and packed schedule throughout your day? A peaceful sleep at night might seem like the only solution. As you all know, most adults need about 6 to 8 hours of sleep at night. Unfortunately, most of people try to sleep as little as possible especially students. During exam season for instance, students tend to stay up late at night and they always keep neglecting their sleep time due to last minute revision. Although you perceive that studying is more important, sleep is also important! And still, most of us do not know how much sleep we need every night.

How lacks of sleep give impacts to our body and brain?

Sleep is a part of healing process. During sleeping, you are rested and the rebuilding process of damaged cells will be occurring. Therefore, getting enough sleep is vital.

Melatonin is a hormone produced in the brain that will induce sleepiness. After sleeping for few hours, your stomach starts to produce melatonin for cleaning the body. However, if you sleep late and wake up early, the cleaning process inside the body will be disrupt because melatonin is still not produced yet. As a result, it affects the quality of your waking hours, including your mental sharpness, productivity, and emotional balance.

“Not getting enough sleep at night will tend to make you feel tired, not freshened and unable to focus in the class as well as leading to a poor long term memory. Besides, the temporal lobe will impact your ability to regulate emotion. This is a reason why you feel cranky, grumpy and moody during your day,” said Dr Rizal, a sleep researcher from Faculty of Cognitive Sciences and Human Development in UNIMAS.

Continuous habit of sleeping late at night will lead to brain injury. The long term impact can cause Alzheimer and dementia symptoms among those aged 40 years and above. Lacks of sleep also speed up the aging process.

Tips for Better Sleep 

These are simple tips that will help you to improve your sleep at night and be more energetic and productive all day along.

  • Stop the intake of caffeinated drink a few hours before bedtime. Caffeine found in coffee, tea, chocolate and Coca-Cola not only keeps you wide-eyed, but also prevents your brain from entering deep sleep. 
  • Take a shower or bath before sleep. This can lower your body temperature and help you fall asleep more quickly. 
  • Choose to sleep in a completely dark and quiet room. The light either from the outdoors or most electronic devices such as laptop or mobile phone, might contribute to sleep disturbances. Avoid sleeping in the light all night because it can cause a neuronal injury inside your brain. 
  • Sleep in a slightly cool temperature around 22°C-24°C with adequate ventilation. A room with extreme temperatures leads to more frequent awakenings and you might have a broken sleep. 

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for English in Media Magazine 

Ida Ahmad Azni

Graduan Ijazah Sarjana Muda Sains dalam Pembangunan Sumber Manusia dari Universiti Malaysia Sarawak. Mula menceburkan diri dalam penulisan blog pada tahun 2009. Bercita-cita untuk menjadi HR professional yang berjaya dan mempunyai angan untuk menjadi seorang penulis.