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Attention! It’s World Sleep Day

World Sleep Day is a day marked for bringing to light the importance of good Sleep and its bearing on Health. It is hosted annually by the World Sleep Society

World Sleep Day is celebrated every March 16th to draw attention to the importance of sleep and to relook at our sleep habits, especially in the technology driven era. This year’s theme is “Preserve your rhythms, to enjoy Life.” The “rhythms” refer to the circadian rhythm which is our internal biological clock that regulates our sleep cycle and helps us differentiate between sleeping time and wakefulness.

Sleep has become such a luxury with everyone stretched for time. Sleep author, Arianna Huffington best highlights the reason behind the modern cry of feeling tired. In her book, The Sleep Revolution, she says, “When we shrink our whole reality down to pending projects, when our life becomes an endless to-do list, it’s difficult to put them aside each night and let ourselves fall asleep and connect with something deeper.” Hence the need to detach and lead a balanced life becomes even more relevant. We need to take out time to enjoy the little joys of life, spend time with nature and loved ones, and disconnect from the trappings of gadgets, while keeping routine.

The term ‘Beauty sleep’ is for real. In her book, she also opens up about how being well rested brought about a change in her personality and cut years from her looks, deflecting the thought of Botox.

Sunday (www.sundayrest.com), a new-age brand into mattresses designed with orthopedic guidance commissioned a sleep survey that showed how majority Indians, at least in metropolitan cities despite work schedules are in the habit of sleeping late. While the best time to sleep is anywhere between 10-11pm, statistics indicate the trend being otherwise. Mumbai has the highest proportion of night owls who sleep after midnight. Only 37.27% of Bangalore residents sleep by 10pm; compared to 10% for Delhi and 12.8% for Mumbai. Rest all sleep by midnight if not later.

Alphonse Reddy, Founder, Sunday says, “The study shows how a fast lifestyle, sedentary habits and nagging addictions are leading to sleep deprivation and poor quality sleep. Also the majority of population in India is young and restless, and with so many distractions nowadays sleep is getting bartered.”

Sleep is the most precious natural resource that we are not honouring enough. According to Dr Himanshu Garg, Somnologist and Founder, Aviss Health, “With people increasingly socializing till late at night and working over time, they are losing out on quality sleep. Children preparing for exams are losing out on sleep hours to pack in more, not realizing the REM phase of sleep which is the deepest is when information gets best absorbed and by sleeping late, they are missing out on it.”

Everyone seems to be focusing on exercising and dieting, not understanding the integral part of this triumvirate which is Sleep. For long lasting productivity, efficiency, and memory, good sleep is a prerequisite. The “bravado” attached to less sleep, needs to go.

Expectations seem to be bearing heavy on sleep. Psychologist Neha Patel from Nanavati hospital says, “There are a lot of expectations from society and individuals from themselves, which when unmet are leading to anxiety and sleep loss.” Getting good sleep is imperative for overall mental and physical well being. “Sufficient sleep can help people cope with life better and live with confidence,” says Patel.

The biggest of Hotel chains in the world now recognize the need for good sleep for their jet setting guests and hence are getting creative. They acknowledge how comfort equals real luxury. Louis Sailer, General Manager, The Leela Palace New Delhi says, “A good night’s sleep is a valuable part of the luxury stay experience for our guests. The quality of sleep that the hotel is able to provide goes a long way in enhancing or marring the opinion of the guest.” As part of their endeavour, they now have a menu of 12 pillows that guests can choose from according to their mood and need.

“Down Special and Super Soft pillows are very popular with the female guests, although Chimera pillow remains the most sought after choice. The Horse Hair pillow is especially for babies and ensures even the youngest patrons sample the luxury of ultimate sleep,” says Sailer.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.


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Shveta Bhagat

The author is a Delhi-based freelance writer

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