Don't Give Up On Sleepby RICHARD CLERICI on 03/10/15
In our practice we often have people call who want to improve their sleep. But more often during the course of working on seemingly unrelated issues I discover that a client has insufficient sleep. Or the client mentions in an offhanded way that they have terrible sleep and have suffered from that condition for years.
The truth is that sleep in America is getting worse and worse. And Americans are accepting this as the "new normal" like the price of gas or the state of the economy. We have become a culture of sleepy, driven and over stimulated people. We find technology addicting and have a difficult time setting any limits on TV, gaming, texting and internet use.
My message is "please don't give up on sleep". Sleep is vitally important. Insufficient sleep is very much a part of the obesity, diabetes, learning and attention difficulties, anxiety and depression epidemics. In fact there are very clear and direct connections between insufficient sleep and all these conditions.
The great majority of sleep problems are various levels of insomnia and sleep deprivation. Some 50% of Americans have insomnia. A growing percentage suffer from sleep apnea and other forms of sleep disordered breathing.
These conditions are very treatable. Most insomnia can be relieved with simple changes in behavior and attitude. For many this is a short process involving weeks of work and change. For some with chronic long-standing insomnia the work may take longer. But it is always worth the time and effort. There are many treatments for sleep apnea and sleep disordered breathing.
Don't let poor sleep become your new normal. Treating sleep disorders and improving sleep quality can add years of life, good energy, better health, mood and memory.