Submitted by Dr. Daryl Bourkep
How well you sleep and how much energy you have during the day go hand in hand. Technology, which is designed to make our life easier, has actually created a society that is chronically fatigued. I am not only referring to patients that suffer from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, but also to a society where the majority of the people suffer from sleep deprivation.
The human body is affected by regular cycles, like moon phases, tides or even the female menstrual cycle. There is another cycle most people are not aware of called the Circadian Cycle, which affects the body’s sleep patterns every 24 hours. The Circadian Cycle is what tells the body when it should rest, and that is in early afternoon (the siesta) and late evening. Modern life, with artificial lighting, caffeine and sugar, allows us to circumvent this natural sleep pattern. When this happens, then the quality of sleep decreases. There are two cycles of sleep; the body first goes in to a light sleep phase and if it not disturbed, it will enter the REM phase of sleep, which is essentially a more therapeutic sleep. During this time, the body heals itself and the individual will awaken felling refreshed.
Conversely, sleep deprivation is a well known form of torture. A short time after being exposed to sleep deprivation, a prisoner will experience psychological pain in the form of depression, unbearable fatigue and mental disorientation.
Look at the proliferation of energy drinks. Energy is like money. You only have so much, and if you use too much one day, you’ll have to pay it back the next. There is no energy bar that I am aware of that is not just a temporary fix. You have to replenish your energy by getting a better quality and longer sleep. If you wish to have more energy, you have to find ways of getting quality sleep. Taking medication will not help to achieve this goal.
Many people cannot get a good night’s sleep because of slow changes that occur over years from high stress levels to musculoskeletal pain, back pain, leg pain or restless leg syndrome. People who have disturbed sleep patterns are pretty easy to recognize; they often complain of feeling tired (even on rising), they are the ones looking for coffee, sugar or donuts to give them more energy, and their mental acuity may be diminished.
Far Infrared Sauna Therapy (F.I.R.S.T.) can help you to train yourself to get a better night’s sleep. The first thing you should do is relax and prepare yourself for sleep. Far Infrared Sauna Therapy (F.I.R.S.T.) causes the release of endorphins, which are the body’s natural opiates or pain killers. This will reduce your pain, relax your muscles and make you feel more comfortable.
It also helps to reduce swelling. Many people can go to sleep, but are later awakened by pain. This occurs when they lie down and the gravitational stress on your joints is removed from the body. The lessened body weight can allow the joints to swell, which is what produces the pain. F.I.R.S.T. helps to increase the circulation in your body, and this helps to remove toxins like caffeine and sugar from your system. This improves the function of your immune system, making you healthier and resulting in better sleep.
Conversely, when F.I.R.S.T. is used in the morning or throughout the day, the release of those same endorphins causes a boost in energy. This is a very common, almost universally reported side effect to morning use of far infrared therapy.
Here are some additional tips to help improve your sleep: