Do you sometimes feel like there's something missing from your life, something you can't quite put your finger on? If so, you're probably right – because the one thing that's missing from so many people's lives in Australia is plenty of quality sleep.
You may not realise this, but undersleeping has reached epidemic proportions. And if the statistics are right, that probably includes you. The average reported sleep time in Australia is just 7 hours, with 12% of people getting by on less than 5.5 hours
of sleep. And the problem is getting worse: the results of a national sleep survey in 2016 showed a 5-10% increase in sleep problems
compared to a similar survey commissioned in 2010.
As a nation, we are routinely not getting enough sleep, or experiencing poor-quality sleep. The recommended average is at least 7.5 hours’ sleep per night; in terms of quality, if you wake up more than once or twice a night, or if would call yourself a 'light sleeper', then you are probably not getting enough deep sleep to restore your body and mind.
There is no denying the global problem of partial sleep deprivation. According to a National Geographic documentary
, people in the Western world are sleeping 2 hours per night less than they did 150 years ago, and the quality of sleep we do get has deteriorated as well.
One of the main reasons for this is because when something becomes normal, you don’t notice it anymore. This is the precise slant of a NSW Health initiative
aiming to help Aussies live longer, happier lives. But nutrition and exercise are only two sides of the 'wellbeing triangle': adequate rest is the third and equally vital foundation of a healthy lifestyle.
Dr David Hillman, director of the Sleep Health Foundation, put the issue into stark perspective
by saying, "Just like obesity, smoking, drinking too much and not exercising enough, sleep problems cause real harm in our community."
When was the last time you stopped to think about your sleep, and how you can improve it? Perhaps you have felt disempowered, believing there is nothing you can do to improve your sleep. If that’s the case, then I have some good news for you.
As a Sleep Expert with many years of experience in helping people reclaim restful slumber, I can tell you with complete certainty that there IS hope!