Sleep is essential for a person's health and wellbeing, according to the National Sleep Foundation (NSF). Yet millions of people do not get enough sleep
and many suffer from lack of sleep. For example, surveys conducted by the NSF (1999-2004) reveal that at least 40 million Americans suffer from over 70 different sleep disorders and 60 percent of adults report having sleep problems a few nights a week or more. Most of those with these problems go undiagnosed and untreated. In addition, more than 40 percent of adults experience daytime sleepiness severe enough to interfere with their daily activities at least a few days each month - with 20 percent reporting problem sleepiness a few days a week or more. Furthermore, 69 percent of children experience one or more sleep problems a few nights or more during a week.
Everyone's individual sleep needs vary. In general, most healthy adults are built for 16 hours of wakefulness and need an average of eight hours of sleep a night. However, some individuals are able to function without sleepiness or drowsiness after as little as six hours of sleep. Others can`t perform at their peak unless they`ve slept ten hours. And, contrary to common myth, the need for sleep doesn`t decline with age but the ability to sleep for six to eight hours at one time may be reduced.
According to sleep researchers, a night`s sleep is divided into five continually shifting stages, defined by types of brain waves that reflect either lighter or deeper sleep. Toward morning, there is an increase in rapid eye movement, or REM sleep, when the muscles are relaxed and dreaming occurs, and recent memories may be consolidated in the brain. The experts say that hitting a snooze alarm over and over again to wake up is not the best way to feel rested. "The restorative value of rest is diminished, especially when the increments are short," said psychologist Edward Stepanski, Ph.D. who has studied sleep fragmentation at the Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. This on and off again effect of dozing and waking causes shifts in the brain-wave patterns. Sleep-deprived snooze-button addicts are likely to shorten their quota of REM sleep, impairing their mental functioning during the day.
Over the past year, I have become a fan of Jeff Gold and he has not disappointed me yet. I checked out his CD, Sleep Well by Jeff Gold
, and of course, I love it. On the CD, hypnotherapist Janet Montgomery uses her soothing voice to talk you through relaxing techniques and breathing techniques. While she`s talking in a calm soothing voice, Jeff Gold`s music is playing in the background. The music has a gentle and relaxing feel to it. I`d listen to it while I wrote up my review, but the problem is it really works and relaxes me! I have much to get done before the day is through so now, of course, isn`t the time for me to listen to it. The thing is, when you have a mind that wonders as I do, the CD gets you to focus on what`s being told to you and the music - keeping you distracted on that one thing rather than the million other things running through your mind. Of course, I`m a fan of the CD and it makes falling asleep a lot more peaceful for me.
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