How good is it that the clocks have changed and we have entered British Summer Time , with all that it brings: longer days, hopefully warm and sunny weather and an easing of Covid restrictions. The time change and ‘loss’ of an hour’s sleep has made me think about the importance of sleep on our mental well-being and to question how many hours really we need.
Research has shown that getting the right amount of sleep is important for health, mental health and wellbeing. The Own it pages on the BBC website albeit aimed at children and young people, has some very helpful suggestions from an academic, for enabling yourself to get more sleep. These include having a good bedtime routine and avoiding blue screen before bed.
Another excellent source of supportive information is the website of the charity Mind. A quote caught my eye:
“Poor sleep leads to worrying. Worrying leads to poor sleep. Worrying about sleep is like your mind trying to fight itself. That’s a horrible place to be.”
For the first time, researchers are beginning to grasp the profound link between sleep and our physical and mental health; with far-reaching implications for all of us. But to build on this work, they need a detailed picture of how we are sleeping now. And you can help by taking part in the UK Sleep Census which has been set up by Prof Colin A. Espie and colleagues at the Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute, University of Oxford, UK.
Thank you to Jackie Scruton for this timely reminder posted on 5th April 2021