Sleep plays a critical role in the quest to stay healthy, but it can be challenging for people to get enough quality sleep night after night. Adding just 15 minutes of sleep each week is a good way to improve sleep health. This is the goal of the Sleeptember®, “Go Dark” campaign.
What Is Sleeptember®?
Sleeptember® is a community focused on promoting awareness of sleep health. Sleeptember® is sponsored by the American Sleep Apnea Association and other partners.
Those who sign the Sleeptember® Pledge agree to turn off lights and electronics a little earlier than usual throughout the month. By taking the pledge, they’ll also be entered into a sweepstakes to win an Apple Watch. Anyone looking to improve their sleep health and knowledge can continue to participate in contests and challenges sponsored by Sleeptember® throughout the year.
What Makes Sleep So Important?
Sleep gives the body time to recover from daily stress, and to build up energy for the following day’s activities. Adults generally need between seven and nine hours of sleep per night. Not getting enough sleep or suffering from poor quality sleep night after night is linked to a number of serious health issues, including cognitive effects like difficulty with short-term memory and trouble concentrating.
Sleep deprivation also has physical side effects, including a higher risk of weight gain due to hormonal changes, an increased risk of heart disease, and a shorter life span. In fact, those who get fewer than six hours of sleep are 12 percent more likely to have a shorter life span that people who get around eight hours of sleep per night.
The Dangers of Sleep Apnea
Roughly 18 million Americans have trouble getting a healthy amount of sleep due to sleep apnea. This condition causes disrupted breathing during the night, lowering their sleep quality. Sleep apnea can also cause people to feel sleepy during the day, which can lead to a higher risk of being in vehicular accidents. In fact, one in five accidents on main roads are due to sleepy drivers.
If You Receive a Sleep Apnea Diagnosis…
…You’ll need the right tools and resources — possibly, a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. This device uses air pressure to keep airways open, allowing you to breathe easier and sleep better.
CPAP mold spores and other bacteria can quickly develop inside the device’s mask, tubes, and reservoir. To avoid potential health complications, you should purchase a SoClean cleaning and sanitizing system after buying a CPAP. SoClean units kill 99.9% of CPAP germs and bacteria utilizing no chemicals or water; and it’s extremely simple to use.
By joining the Go Dark campaign, you’ll make a smart move toward getting more sleep. Have a happy — and restful — Sleeptember®!