The Pro sports blog
The material provided here is general information and individual advice should be obtained with an evaluation or assessment by an appropriate physical therapist
Michael J. Hogan SPT
Sleep is an altered state of consciousness that individuals should spend one third of their lives in. Unfortunately, studies find that Americans only get 6.1-6.8 hours of sleep per night, which is below CDC recommendations for all age ranges. Eight hours of quality sleep is considered optimal for anyone over the age of twelve, but when life gets stressful with busy schedules, late nights, and work that just has to get done, sleep is often the first thing to go. Losing a couple hours of sleep often gets brushed off, but consistent sleep loss can have adverse effects on our bodies.
When recovering from an injury, sleep could be the catalyst for a smooth recovery and lack of sleep could elongate the healing process. Studies have shown that decreased sleep is associated with increased pain perception, decreased ability to recover, and decreased max vertical jump. While increasing sleep to optimal levels is associated with increased athletic performance, decreased reaction time, and improved subjective mood. Therefore, achieving optimal sleep could improve an individual’s ability to rehabilitate and improve their outcomes.
The safest and most effective way to increase sleep time and improve sleep quality is to establish healthy sleep hygiene. Sleep hygiene includes establishing a regular bedtime routine as well as consistently going to sleep and waking up around the same time. Bright lights from phones and TVs should be avoided at night, especially right before bed. The bedroom should be kept cool, dark, and comfortable. Caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol should all be avoided before bed. Finally, you should not spend excessive time in bed outside of sleeping hours. These recommendations can be used to guide individuals toward optimizing their sleep.
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