If you have a theme that never goes out of style, this topic is sleep. We live in search of an ideal dream that really makes us wake up rested and in a good mood. However, today it seems impossible and with so much information about the act of sleeping, how do you know what really works?
We spoke with dr. Alan Eckel, neurologist and member of the Brazilian Sleep Association (ABS) to debunk the main myths and truths on the subject. Come?
BUT FIRST… WHY SLEEP WELL?
“We can understand sleep as a vital function for sustaining life,” explains the doctor. “We have to breathe properly and healthily, otherwise we will get sick. And if we stop breathing, we will die. It’s the same with sleep: if I don’t sleep well, I’ll get sick, and if I stop that process, I’ll die.”
In other words, sleep is vital for the maintenance of human life, it interacts with all our biological systems, promoting the maintenance of life.
Speaking specifically about the functions of sleep, today we know that it works:
- In the cognitive function, it helps to capture, fix and evoke memories
- On mood modulation
- In maintaining cerebral homeostasis, ensuring the balance of brain functions
Our brain has a system, called lymphatic, that cleans the brain: in short, this system removes potentially toxic metabolic waste from our central nervous system, and this happens almost exclusively during sleep.
You already know that a good night’s sleep is very important, right? However, it is necessary to take into account three important dimensions when talking about sleep: quantity (the number of hours you should sleep – which can vary from person to person), quality (whether the sleep time was of good quality or not) and regularity (if you sleep correctly number of hours for you, quality and in a relatively similar time). For a really good sleep, these three dimensions must be balanced.
MYTHS AND TRUTHS ABOUT SLEEP
Now that we have remembered the main functions and importance of sleep, it is time to move on to the next step: an overview of myths and truths about this topic.
MYTH: Your sleep time is the only thing that matters
As already mentioned, there are three essential dimensions of good sleep: time, quality and regularity. Just thinking about the number of hours you sleep each night does not guarantee restful sleep. “Sleep of good quality, quantity and regularity will give the impression that you are rested,” explains the doctor.
TRUTH: Where you sleep matters
According to the doctor. Alan, the environment plays a role in the quality of our sleep. Sleeping in an environment that is safe, thermally comfortable (not too hot, not too cold), quiet and dark is critical. For people who share a room or a bed, it is interesting to talk about it and adjust expectations so that the rest of the two is not threatened.
MYTH: Cell phone light does not disturb sleep
There is a lot of controversy about screen usage (such as television, computers and cell phones) before bed, but the truth is that the light emitted by these devices can actually interfere with the body’s production of melatonin, a neurohormone that regulates sleep and is linked to light exposure. .
“The use of flat screens, whether cell phones, televisions, computers or tablets, acts as a light emitter, and this will inhibit our production of melatonin, which can alter the time we fall asleep and often even the quality of our sleep.” he says.
TRUTH: Exercising in the morning improves sleep
THE practicing physical activities It is one of the factors that guarantees a good sleep, especially when it is done in the morning.
This doesn’t mean you can’t exercise at night, but it’s a good idea to avoid high-intensity activities. Very intense exercise (like a football game) can increase the body’s production of cortisol, and this hormone, known as the stress hormone, keeps us awake. That is, it is more difficult to relax and fall asleep.