Sleep Archive


How to help your preschooler sleep alone

Many parents face the challenge of getting their child to move from sleeping in bed with them to sleeping in their own bed. Changing this habit takes time; being practical and consistent about it helps.

The Essential 8: Enhanced advice for a healthy heart

The American Heart Association revamped its online tool, My Life Check, designed to help people prevent cardiovascular disease. Along with other changes, the AHA added healthy sleep duration to the list of seven other factors assessed by the tool. Those factors are maintaining a healthy weight, not smoking, being physically active, eating a healthy diet, and keeping blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol at acceptable levels. Each factor (now known as Life's Essential 8) are scored on a scale of 1 to 100 and used to generate a composite cardiovascular health score.

New advice on melatonin use in children

Melatonin is a popular over-the-counter sleep aid. But because it is sold as a dietary supplement it is not regulated, and recent warnings include reports of melatonin overdoses in children. If parents need help getting their child to sleep, there are other things they can try first.

Poor sleep heightens risk of COPD flare ups

A 2022 study found that people with COPD who reported poor sleep had significantly higher risks of experiencing flare-ups of worsened breathing. Poor sleep may more accurately predict COPD flare-ups than a person's smoking history, researchers said.

Heart health guidelines get updated

The American Heart Association recently revised its checklist for achieving optimal heart health. Adequate sleep was added, and updates were made to previous recommendations for diet, cholesterol and blood sugar measurements, and nicotine exposure.

Natural ways to boost energy

As men age, many factors affect their energy levels, such as declining muscle mass, unhealthy diet, poor sleep, and increased stress. Addressing these areas are some of the best ways to increase energy levels. Exercise, healthy eating, good sleep, and stress reduction can increase mood-boosting hormones, help the body produce more adenosine triphosphate (the energy-carrying molecules found in cells), and balance blood sugar levels to prevent sudden fatigue, among other benefits.

Sleep added to list of essential healthy heart habits

The American Heart Association added sleep to its list of factors for cardiovascular health. The others are a healthy diet; physical activity; low levels of nicotine exposure; and healthy levels of weight, cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood pressure.

Light during sleep linked to conditions that harm the heart

Older adults exposed to light while sleeping at night may be more likely to have obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes compared with adults who sleep in darkness.

Not-so-sweet slumber

Morning back and neck pain are often triggered by sleep position or poor choice of mattress or pillow. Certain sleep poses, especially stomach-down, can lead to pain by creating misalignment of the spine and other areas of the body. To prevent back and neck pain, people can switch sleep positions frequently, align all body areas when shifting positions, use firmer pillows, consider buying a new mattress, and place a foam wedge under the pelvis or between the legs while sleeping.

Too little sleep may be hard on your heart

Not getting sufficient sleep may harm the cardiovascular system by triggering physiological and hormonal changes that increase blood pressure, blood sugar, and blood levels of substances that indicate inflammation. People who don't regularly get at least seven hours of sleep a night should assess their daily habits to look for ways to improve, such as by establishing an earlier bedtime and turning off all electronic devices at least an hour before bedtime.

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