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Rest and Sleep

Sleep is essential for health and for mental and physical well being. It is necessary for us to spend at least one third of our lives asleep. That means 8 hours of sleep per day is necessary.

Adequate amount of rest and sleep are vital for good health and good appearance.They also influence mental alertness, physical performances as well as human relationships.

During sleep the body replacesn tissue cells and eliminates the waste products created by fatigue , at a fastest rate than when awake. During sleep the blood pressure is lower heart muscle contractions are slower, this gives rest to the heart and blood system. Lack of sleep increases fatigue and also susceptibility to a number ailments like cold.Sleep is a bodys mechanism for combating fatigue

Factors interfering with sleep

Anxiety, worry and frustration, over excitement interfere with sleep

It is important to keep excitement at the lowest before bedtime.

Prolonged stress deprives one of sound sleep but moderate fatigue resulting from moderate exercise gives you good sleep.

Strenous exercise shortly before sleep can interfere with sleep.

Caffine (in coffee) can prevent sleep.

Emotional excitement, improper food, improper exercise during the day, studying or working late nights, worries premenstrual tensions can cause a condition called insomnia (not being able to sleep even when you are tired and want to sleep.)

Changes during sleep-

- Most common change during sleep is muscular relaxation and generalised inertia.

- Blood flow through the muscles reduces but blood flow through skin increases.

- The skin is flushed and the sweat glands function better. This is the reason that the body looses heat quickly during sleep.

- Heart rate and blood pressure falls, Breathing is slower deeper and more regular.

- Relaxation of the jaws and throath muscles causes snoring.

- Dreaming occurs in the shallow levels of sleep.

- It reduces or eliminates tension.

- If you do not get adequate sleep (i.e. 6 hours) your memory is not as sharp as it should be and your temper is not even as it should be as you tend to be irritable.

- Thermal regulations (heat liberation stage)
A good 7-8 hour sleep refreashes you.
Maintenance of a constant body tempreture is one of the basic homeostatic function of sleep. A temperature trough occurs during the first third of the sleep cycle.
If you sleep less then there is no elimination of the heat during sleep as thermal regulation is a very important function of the sleep.
This causes increase in the temperature of the body, which reflects through the various sufferings - (Insomnia)

DO'S

1) Avoid night watching and have adquate sleep.

2) If you have had inadequate sleep then avoid over exertion the next day.

3) Both mental and physical overexertion (like driving) should be avoided.

4) Avoid overeating.

5)Avoid eating high calorie foods.

6) Avoid eating spicy and pungent foods which can cause acidity.

7) Have natural foods like plenty of fruits and vegetables.

8) Have plenty of liquids like water, juices etc.which will maintain a thermal balance in the body.

9) Keep your bowels clear by eating fibre rich foods.

10) Try to compensate your deficient sleep in the following 2-3 days,

A dark quiet ventillated room, a fairly firm mattress and little exercise during the day are prerequisites for good sleep.

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