If you have problems sleeping or wish to improve the quality of your sleep, there are a number of myths and misconceptions about sleep that you must know about. What you are about to read may be surprising, if not shocking to you. Hopefully, you'll begin to look at sleep from a different perspective on your way towards better and more refreshing sleep.
The first myth or misconception is that eating before bedtime is bad for your health because if your body is spending all its' resources digesting food, then it won't have the energy for restoration and healing for the other parts of your body, particularly the brain. There's some degree of truth to this, although it's never been definitively proven. An alternate explanation that has been proven is that when you have food in your stomach while sleeping, some of stomach contents or juices can be actively sucked up into your throat, causing you to wake up frequently, preventing deep efficient sleep. It's been shown that even normal people have short occasional breathing pauses which can create a vacuum effect in the throat. This prevents deep, efficient sleep, leading to various conditions such as fatigue, lack of energy, stress, and weight gain.
Another common belief is that alcohol is dehydrating. If you drink a few beers before bedtime, you'll definitely go to the bathroom more often, but that's because you make more urine to filter out the excess water volume that you took in. This concept is similar to what happens with coffee. One thing about alcohol is that it's a very strong muscle relaxant. Drinking before bedtime can make you more drowsy, so you'll fall asleep faster, but once you're asleep, due to extra muscle relaxation of your upper airway throat muscles, you'll stop breathing and wake up more often. This prevents you from getting deep, restful, restorative sleep. Additionally, every time you stop breathing, due to the vacuum forces that are created, whatever is lingering in your stomach will be sucked up into your throat. This causes your throat to be dry and sore with lots of mucous and discomfort. You'll also have the typical morning hangover headache, which is similar to what happens when you are deprived of deep sleep.
You may have heard from either your friends or your grandmother that it's healthy to sleep on your back. Yes, it's true, if you are able to breathe properly while sleeping, but due to modern man's smaller jaws and relative airway narrowing, many people literally can't breathe as well on their backs, especially in deep sleep when your muscles are most relaxed. If you are prone to this condition, you'll most likely prefer to sleep on either your side or stomach.
Another myth that's been perpetuated by dermatologists is that you should sleep on your back to prevent facial wrinkles. For reasons due to what was stated in the previous myth, if you like to sleep on your stomach, you're doing to so that you can breathe properly. Forcing you to sleep on your back will keep your face off the pillow, but your quality of sleep will definitely suffer. This prevents the body's restorative and healing properties, and can actually cause more wrinkles.
One of the most popular myths that's very common amongst most doctors is that you have to be male, obese, and an obnoxious snorer (MOOS) to have obstructive sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea is a potentially serious condition where you stop breathing multiple times, with long breathing pauses. Untreated sleep apnea can lead to depression, anxiety, weight gain, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, heart attack and stroke. Yes, it's true that these MOOS are more likely to have sleep apnea, but we know now that you can be a young, thin woman that doesn't snore, and still have significant obstructive sleep apnea. If you don't fit the classic profile, and you complain of fatigue and unrefreshing sleep, you may be diagnosed with insomnia or depression instead.
Another dangerous myth is that snoring is either a nuisance or something to be laughed at. Because of this myth, many people continue to go undiagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea and go on to suffer various medical problems later in life.
One last myth is that you wake up to go to the bathroom many times because you have to urinate. Yes, this is true to some degree, especially if you drink a lot of water before going to bed. But a recent study looked at people who go frequently to the bathroom at night. They discovered that the main reason why you wake up is not because your bladder is full, but because you stop breathing, and then realize that your bladder is partially full.
If you have tried everything to sleep better (including exercising more and eating healthier), and you continue to be tired all day long, before you resort to medications, take a look at my free report called Tired of Being Tired? at http://www.constantlytired.com.http://DoctorStevenPark.com