What’s sleep got to do with it?

Well, hello, absolutely everything. Sleep is that time when we are not awake, running around doing things we want to do or have to do. It is a time when our body is working on auto-pilot to get us ready for our next day. In a perfect world, we wake up refreshed, reinvigorated, and rested.

While I’m not quite living in “perfect world” status, I do tend to sleep rather well these days. Of course there is always that one night when I’m left tossing and turning, feeling anxious about this or that, wondering when in the heck Mr. Sandman is going to drop in and knock me out, but for the most part, sleep has become second nature as it should have been all along.

The past week, my hot husband hasn’t been sleeping well. Because I tend to be so full of gumption and this notion in my head that there is no mountain too high nor valley too deep, that “I can fix that.”, I did what any good wife would do and set to task.

The first night of “Where’s Waldo, sleep edition”, I suggested maybe eighty-sixing the pretzel, chips, or what ever carbohydrate loaded snack he was thinking about having. Carbohydrates like pretzels or chips can often give one a burst of energy, and a burst of energy at bedtime is not quite the thing needed for good sleep. Maybe it’s been more than just this week because he was down like four flats on a Cadillac when he said “ok, I’ll try anything.”

Maybe it worked a little. The following morning, he looked like he had slept better. He said he slept better until he heard the cat in the closet and that darned pillow. I figured it was time to call in the big guns, so I went to town.

Upon arrival in town, I hit the store and made a beeline to the sleepy section. Pushing the frugal me aside, I skipped the five dollar pillows and jumped right over to the cost a bit more but maybe work a bit better section and got to hugging. After hugging several pillows, I opted for a couple of firm pillows, one of which boasts of it’s ability to never lose it’s shape. I then remembered him saying something about the firmness of the mattress, I like firm, he likes soft, so I bought a memory foam mattress pad.

Day three, new pillows, new mattress pad, still no snacking, sleep a little better, so far so good.

I know he’s exhausted, they had to pour concrete really early Monday as if the regular days aren’t early enough, so I feel bad that the whole sleep thing didn’t magically happen overnight. There is progress, and progress is a good thing. I’m also thinking his progress is better than my progress way back when because I haven’t even started him on the transcendental meditation…

Maybe this evening we will talk about circadian rhythms and he will be game to experimenting with one of my black out masks. “It’s not that, it’s just that I hear everything.” Call me crazy, but seriously, a black out mask is just as good as ear plugs. I did not hear the cat in the closet, I also didn’t hear the neighbor’s dogs, or that rooster that didn’t get the memo about the difference in the sun rising and the neighbors leaving their back porch light on…

Back when he was sleeping good and I was tossing and turning, looking for ways, anything really (except sleeping pills) to help me sleep, he thought I may have been a bit goofy. I have to admit, sleeping in the black out mask, turning the lights down as the sun set, getting off the computer shortly thereafter, not eating after dinner, sometimes even exercising before bed, imagining myself swinging in a hammock in Cancun, sounds a bit silly if you’re already sleeping well, but if you’re not, really, what’s the worst that could happen?

For me, sleep is tied, as far as importance goes, with testing my blood sugar. Sleep or lack of sleep is a key player when it comes to my fasting blood sugar. I’ve found that when I sleep well, my FBG is well under 100, I awaken refreshed, and ready to take on what ever is thrown at me. (preferably bacon, cooked softly, un-drained, thank you very much) Just as good sleep makes me feel good, bad sleep makes me feel bad. I don’t remember ever having a FBG under 100 after a night of fitful or lack of sleep. That crazy little monster also known as Dawn Phenomenon is there to haunt me each morning after a bad night.

If you have time and are not sleeping well, google Circadian rhythms and Dr. Jack Kruse, maybe read about his Leptin Rx while you are researching, and think about the little changes you could make to ensure good sleep because sleep is really that important. Like with exercise, good sleep takes time, so turn that computer off at dusk, pick up a book instead of watching the tube, if meditation isn’t your thing, just think happy thoughts in your head instead, who knows, good sleep may just come your way.

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6 thoughts on “What’s sleep got to do with it?

  1. Maybe this strange little thing might help some reader, so I’ll throw it out there. My husband has sleep issues due to the toll of taking night call catching up with him. We have found that the acupressure point between the big and second toe, right under the ball of the foot (the kind of bulging pad up near the toes), does wonders for his sleep. I’m the kind wife and I try to massage that point before bed, and it seems to help quite a bit. I mash on it pretty good. We googled it, when we noticed that it seemed to help with sleep and indeed, it’s a real thing in alternative takes on medicine! That “voodoo” medicine needs some more investigation! LOL!

    • He slept better last night, still making progress. Thank you for the acupressure tip, I will try that, and I’m sure he will be up for it, maybe I’ll call it a foot rub. Maybe “voodoo” works like placebos and our brains really are that darned awesome. Have a great day 🙂

  2. I am desperate for a good night’s sleep and I have become an irritable bitch during the past year because since I have come off my meds (doctor’s OK), I have not been able to sleep through the night. Some nights I can’t get to sleep at all. Some nights I lay there for hours before sleep comes and then I wake up after 90 minutes, or so. Then the falling back to sleep process starts again and I lay there for another hour or more and this happens several times during the night. Sometimes I give up, get up, and try to read myself sleepy. Some nights I can fall asleep fairly quickly but I wake up at 2 or 3am and I’m up for the rest of the night. DH wears a CPAP, and that makes noise that irritates the devil out of me, so I bought a sound machine, which helps, but that also irritates the devil out of me. Some nights (like last night) I go upstairs to try to get some peace and quiet, which does seem to help, but I still wake up frequently and the twin size bed or the futon is not very comfy, so I read this article hoping to find something I haven’t tried! I do have an eye mask but I haven’t used it consistently. I have ear plugs but they make my ears itch and that wakes me up. I’ve got sun glasses that supposedly block the blue light from the TV and computer, but I haven’t used them consistently either. I’ve tried magnesium oil, magnesium supplements, melatonin, valerian, sleepy time tea, OTC sleep aids, etc., etc., etc! What interests me about what you have written is that lack of sleep can cause a higher blood sugar level. I’m not diabetic (yet!), my FBS was 111 so I am concerned that I am on my way. Long story short, I haven’t been consistent with keeping my carbs as low as I should, and two things I haven’t tried are the Leptin reset and meditation. I have done the relaxation thing with headphones, but I get more irritated TRYING to relax, than I get relaxed. So thanks for the Jack Kruse suggestion. I will check out the leptin reset, pull out my eye mask, and oh yeah, might have to try that exercise thing…..but not at night. I do admit to being a couch potato. Anyway, thanks for taking the time to post this. I hope your “hot” husband and I both get a better night’s sleep tonight!

    • While I would love to say I was sleeping better in no time, it did take a while. I was firm in my conviction of not trying a supplement or sleeping pill, so I was pretty much willing to try pert near anything.

      A friend suggested the Leptin Rx as a means to combat visceral fat (I’m going off my sometimes flawed memory here, so bear with me). Since it was more about changing over to hunger rather than eating by the clock, I figured it couldn’t hurt to try, it didn’t cost anything, I didn’t have to change what I was eating (already basically primal at that point), just when I was eating.

      My extent of transcendental meditation was what google could get me for free. Basically, I see myself somewhere nice, relaxed, and try to hear the waves crashing or the birds chirping in my head. (yes, I laughed at myself, thought myself loony, until it actually worked)

      I don’t know why the eye mask helps me to not hear noises that once haunted my nights. It took a while for it to be that way, so it’s most likely a combination of everything. The mask does not work as noise control when our grandchildren are here. If Faith wakes in the middle of the night, I hear it.

      I hope that given time your sleep situation improves. You’ve already got an eye mask, maybe setting up a scene in your mind’s eye to go with the noise machine won’t be such a bad thing. Taking control of your fasting blood sugar without being diabetic is commendable, pre-diabetics could learn a lot from you. Have a nice day 🙂

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