All sleep is Beauty Sleep. Sleep research studies have shown us that wild and wonderful things happen to our bodies at night while we sleep. Our sleep has stages, and it is during those stages of sleep that various biological processes are carried out such as cell restoration, memory formation and re-energization so we can take on the new day. This is oversimplification of course, but suffice it to say that when we lay down at night that’s when the body is given the opportunity to rejuvenate, regenerate and repair itself - just like the skin.
I presume I slept like a baby when I was a baby and I do remember sleeping till noon or later when I was a teenager. Nursing and Graduate school meant I studied late into the wee hours of the morning and slept with my textbooks as pillows making them readily accessible should I awake and want more study time (yep, it is true-total bookworm). During my young adulthood and early professional years, getting by with few hours of sleep felt like a badge of honor. I was trying to squeeze the most from life and when you do that, sleep gets in the way of doing it all! I think I have always wanted at least a 36-hour day so I could accomplish everything I wanted to accomplish and STILL have time for the recommended 8 hours of sleep! Little did I know what I chose to do in my 20’s and 30’s would become a chronic condition in my 40’s and 50’s. Insomnia has been a big struggle for me for the last 13 years or so. I try not to dwell in the past and I certainly am proud of what I accomplished during the years I CHOSE to deprive myself a full night’s sleep but goodness how I wish I knew then what I know now. I would have slowed down, cared for myself and slept a lot more!
I long for 8 hours of uninterrupted, restorative sleep that so many people I know blissfully get each night! As such, I have become somewhat of a student of the science of sleep and a disciple of all things that contribute to the power of those precious zzzz’s. I have consulted experts, done my fair share of research, and have quite possibly tried every bed, pillow, sheet, sleep aid, mask, gadget, or supplement available. Hope for a good night’s sleep is plentiful and usually comes in a lavender scent!
Insomnia is a huge problem in the United States affecting 10-60% of the population (an estimated 70 million people (about twice the population of California) depending on the study you read. It affects 30-48% of the older population, 23% of teens and 50% of pregnant women. Looks like I am not alone in my sleeplessness. However, the science is truly clear: Sleep = good and no sleep = bad.