Sleep latency is the amount of time it takes you to fall asleep after turning off the lights. Initially, you’re not supposed to take too long to fall asleep after you switch off the lights. The amount of time to sleep after switching off the lights directly affects their sleep debt and sleep efficiency. An ideal sleep influences a solid night’s sleep.
How Sleep Latency is Related to Sleep Efficiency
Individuals are considered sleep efficient if they spend most of their time sleeping. In this sense, sleep latency and sleep efficiency are directly related. Those considered sleep inefficient spend their time in bed, not asleep.
85% sleep efficiency is what is considered normal. However, good sleep efficiency is above 90%. If your sleep efficiency is lower than 85%, that’s very poor. If you can sleep quickly after switching off the lights, you will have an efficient sleep. Sleep latency and sleep efficiency go hand in hand.
How Sleep Debt Impacts Sleep Latency
Sleep debt is a sign that you need to try and get as much sleep on a nightly basis. Try sleeping on your side since it’s healthy for you, and invest in a mattress that’s best for side sleepers to encourage you to remain in this position comfortably for the entire night. Sleep debt tends to accumulate over time, leading to physical and mental fatigue. People with a lot of sleep debt or extremely tired tend to fall asleep quicker than a well-rested person or one who doesn’t have any sleep debt.
A person’s sleep latency is highly affected by their sleep debt. If you fall asleep after lying down immediately, sleep debt is a sign. Sleep debt is a sign that you need to try and get as much sleep on a nightly basis.
Sleep Cycle and Sleep Latency
As we stated earlier, to get a solid night’s sleep, you have to lay an ideal sleep latency foundation. A solid night’s sleep occurs in two stages. That is the rapid eye movement sleep and the non-rapid eye movement sleep.
REM sleep tends to be deeper than NREM sleep. They have in common that they are directly affected by sleep latency. If you have a good sleep latency and fall asleep after a reasonable amount of time, you have a better chance of progressing comfortably through the stages of sleep and enjoying a deep sleep in turn.
Avoid Sugar and Sweeteners
Many people who suffer from sleep latency tend to turn to comfort food because it helps them feel better. However, this does more harm than good. Eating foods made of processed sugars like cookies, candy, junk food, and sugary cereals may give you a temporary better because a small amount of dopamine is released.
However, when the sugar high wears off, your state of mind will crush, and you will feel lower than before. Some studies show that consuming sugar increases your levels of sleep latency. By cutting down sugar or getting alcohol addiction treatment, you might give yourself a chance to beat sleep latency.
Experience the Outdoors
Sometimes, social anxiety and sleep latency mean that all you want is to stay locked up in the house. You tend to avoid crowded places because you don’t feel like you are up for the task of having to meet people.
However, attempting to go out will immensely boost your emotions even if it’s not so far away. The Vitamin D from the sun and fresh air also go a long way in boosting how you feel.
When you are sleep-deprived, you should lay off the alcohol. A beer or a glass of wine may help you feel by making you less anxious and more relaxed because alcohol is a significant sleep depriver. It affects the part of your brain that controls anxiety, inhibition, and how you feel.
However, the more you drink, the more you are taking the sleeping pills into your system, which will push you into feeling more restless, low, and sleep-deprived than when you started. If you have been fighting sleep latency for a while now, consider cutting off alcohol.
Have a Routine and Keep at It
When you are sleep-deprived and don’t want to leave the house, sticking to a routine is the last thing you can think of doing. Ignoring your routine may seem like an easy way out, but it will only worsen you.
It is okay if you want to take time off to implement ways to overcome sleep latency or practice self-care, but you need to keep track of your day-to-day routines. You need to make sure that you can do simple stuff such as paying your bills, doing your chores, etc. If you let things pile up, you will be more sleep-deprived.
Sleep latency is directly affected by sleep efficiency and sleep debt, which affects the sleep cycle. The ideal solution to getting a solid sleep is to make sure you work around these influencers.
Get rid of all distractions like your smartphone, laptop, or TV. Make sure you also get enough sleep at night to avoid sleep debt. Listening to calming music or doing yoga before bed may also help you get an ideal amount of sleep. You need to make sure you can sleep quicker after switching off the lights.