Sleep Quality

 

Be it stress at work, emotional troubles, personal crisis, increasing use of social media use, our sleep quality very often tends to take a hit in the process. As we are aware an average person requires 6-8 hours of sleep.

Sleep debt or sleep deficit is the cumulative effect of not getting enough sleep. A large sleep debt may lead to mental or physical fatigue.

Persons experiencing sleep insufficiency are reported to be more likely to suffer from chronic diseases such as hypertension, poor concentration, auto accidents, diabetes, depression, and obesity, as well as from cancer, increased mortality, and reduced quality of life and productivity.

In many cases, a disturbance of sleep could be one of the symptoms of another disorder, either mental or physical like depression, ADHD, bipolar disorder, eating disorders, substance abuse etc.

INSOMNIA

Symptoms

  • Difficulty falling asleep is the most prevalent complaint
  • Difficulty staying asleep
  • Early wakening.
  • Anxiety at bedtime
  • Rumination(Overthinking) about getting enough sleep
  • Physical or mental tiredness
  • Irritable mood

Typically, insomnia develops at a time of increased life-stress and tends to be more prevalent among women, older individuals and psychologically disturbed and socioeconomically disadvantaged people. When insomnia is repeatedly experienced, it can lead to an increased fear of sleeplessness and a preoccupation with its consequences. This creates a vicious circle which tends to perpetuate the individual's problem.

Hypersomnia/Excessive Sleepiness

Hypersomnia is defined as a condition of either excessive daytime sleepiness and sleep attacks (not accounted for by an inadequate amount of sleep) along with a tendency to fall asleep at inappropriate times during daytime.

Causes Of Sleep Disturbance

  • Stress

    Increased release of the stress hormone cortisol hinders relaxation and leads to imbalance in sleep cycle.

  • Increased Workload

    Unfinished tasks, next day presentations leave us burning the oil from both ends keeping us up all night.

  • Parenting struggles

    An ill child, taking care of a newborn baby- sleep quality deteriorates due to parenthood challenges.

  • Social media use

    Staying up at night due to usage of social media usage is becoming a widespread epidemic especially among the youth

How Counseling Helps

  • Understanding Triggers for Sleep Disturbance

    This is done through a sleep diary for keeping a track of sleep and any factors that might be contributing to disturbances. Sleep log include bedtime habits, substances that might interfere with sleep, the effects of sleep, and more.

  • Lifestyle Modifications

    Improving Sleep hygiene like avoiding caffeine after noon, incorporating physical exercise, making the environment conducive for sleep, restricting social media usage.

  • Setting up a Pre Sleep Routine

    Maximizing the use of pre sleep period in some relaxing activities like a post dinner walk, hot water shower, reading a book. Avoid stressful, stimulating activities—doing work, discussing emotional issues. Physically and psychologically stressful activities can cause the body to secrete the stress hormone cortisol, which is associated with increasing alertness.

  • Relaxation Techniques

    Incorporating deep-breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation and guided imagery to help you fall asleep. Practicing mindfulness meditation before sleep has proven to be beneficial in having more peaceful and restful sleep.

  • Identifying maladaptive thought patterns

    Ruminating i.e going over and over again the same is found to be one of the most prevalent reasons for sleep disturbance as it tends to cause anxiety Working the loop of thoughts and replacing it.

  • Managing Life Crisis

    Financial crisis, loss of a loved one, break up, emotional turmoil, adjustment to changing life phases have an impact on our sleep quality. Resolving the predominant challenges would further lead to improvement in sleep quality.

Counseling Outcome

  • Improved sleep quality
  • Reduced stress
  • Enhanced productivity
  • Active/Energetic
  • Effective decision making

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