How to Sleep for Better Heart Health

Your heart needs sleep. This shouldn't come as a surprise. Sleep is essential for mental wellbeing and physical health. Unfortunately, practicing proper sleep hygiene is not always a priority in our busy lives. You may think you can get away with just a few hours of sleep a night since it won't impact something really significant, like cardiovascular health.

Think again.

Because sleep quality directly affects heart health and poor sleep is one of the biggest indicators of heart disease.

Sleep helps us lower stress levels and boost our mood. The sleep-stress cycle can make it difficult to get back into a healthy routine without taking real steps to change how stress impacts daily life.

The more sleep you lose, the less you can handle normal stress levels. In turn, excessive stress can contribute to higher blood pressure and a greater likelihood of having a heart attack. Lack of sleep can make it difficult for your body to release the chemicals necessary to lower blood pressure and heart rate. Those who don’t sleep enough are at risk for obesity, diabetes, hypertension and coronary heart disease.

And on and on it goes. Until you break the cycle.

Reverse the Curse: Get Better Sleep for Your Heart

Despite your best efforts, there are many reasons why you might not be getting the sleep you need. Long work hours, a demanding home life, and difficulty falling asleep can all make it difficult for you to wind down. Sleep apnea patients also tend to struggle with good heart health.

But there is hope.

One of the best ways to tackle your sleeping woes, improve your heart health, and decrease your stress is to implement a regular exercise routine. Working out is great for your cardiovascular system and can help reduce your risk of coronary heart disease.

You’ll also want to pay attention to your bedtime habits. Going to bed at the same time every night, getting enough natural light, and keeping screens out of the bedroom are all great ways to improve your ability to fall asleep each night.

If you have a hard time sleeping despite your best efforts, you might want to go to a doctor to get checked for sleep apnea. This condition causes the sufferer to stop breathing while they’re sleeping, waking them up from slumber and making it difficult for them to get the rest they need.

Mental health approaches have also proven effective in treating insomnia. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) based treatments can help patients identify thought patterns that make it difficult to sleep and give them tools for dealing with those thoughts.

Protecting your heart is vital to overall health. Improving your sleep is a great place to start

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