Sleep quality Dr Viola Zulian

why do
we sleep?

Very often I find myself having to investigate the quality of sleep to understand if a subject rests well and especially if it manages to handle daily stress and emotions well.
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In thehistory books it is said that genius personalities needed very few hours of sleep: Leonardo da Vinci, Einstein, Margheret Tacher, Nikola Tesla, Edison needed short moments of rest to re-direct themselves. In light of this, one wonders why we sleep? If you can actually do something brilliant in life without having to waste time resting, for what reason at some point of the day Morpheus is looking for us?

Already in 350 a.C. Aristotle posed the same question in the treatise «Of sleep and wake« and to this day we could not yet respond in a persuasive way; but what is evident is the relationship between lack or sleep deprivation and health status. Sleepless syndrome is related to the onset of diabetes, obesity and Alzheimer’s. Failure to rest is the cause of accidents at work, traffic accidents and professional negligence.

In Europe as in the USA, clinics to treat sleep disorders are born as mushrooms. Over the last 2 centuries, the man sleeps on average 2 hours less per night. In fact, up to 1800 electricity was widespread and artificial light was very common. This is to say that as the cities are “turned on” in the light of progress, so too do our brains remain unconscious victims of this hormonal perturbation for longer.

Yes, because when it begins to get dark, natural light is lowered, visual perception changes and the brain begins to secrete melatonin, the hormone that induces sleep. This causes us to start yawning, we look for a comfortable place, we lie down and close our eyes. During sleep the brain reworks the memories of the moments lived and makes a first selection. The heartbeat slows down, the blood pressure is lowered as well as the basal temperature and the magic starts because the cellular repair processes begin. The daily stress, the food we eat, the pollution put a strain on these marvelous cells that need ennemic processes to repair the damage done by free radicals. During sleep this happens in a spectacular way.

But if instead of following this natural rhythm, we remain glued to our screens, tablets, cell phones and turn on the neon lights, our brain will perceive the message “it’s day, light up!” And so a sleep cycle has passed, we’ll be frustrated from not being able to rest, with a performance syndrome because we see the time flowing. So sleep is a fundamental part of our day, as well as eating, walking and loving. It ensures that our body is healthy and our days are serene.

Do not mistreat and respect the circadian rhythm (sleep-wake rhythm) by switching off the screens and lighting the candles!

To Sleep Dr Viola Zulian