Everyday, we get a little bit older. However, just because the clock is ticking at a certain rate, doesn't mean that we have to match it. Of course there isn't much we can do about the fact that we're getting older, however, there are some things we can do to prevent feeling older. Here is the worst sleep habit causing you to feel older!
Aging is Mental
Aging is a biological process that no matter what inventions we come up with, is inevitable. However, you can control your mindset when it comes to aging to make the process a little smoother. If you believe that life at 60 is over and will be a drag, then it will be. However, if you believe that a health and productive life in old age is possible and attainable, then that can make a world of a difference.
Unfortunately, so many people believe that life is downhill after the prime-time years of middle age. Aging certainly isn't easy, but positivity in regards to thinking about aging is the secret ingredient. However, it can definitely be a little more difficult on those days when your back is hurting a little extra in the mornings.
A new study at the University of Exeter has uncovered a fascinating link between sleep patterns and how one perceive themselves aging.
Poor sleep may leave you feeling older
The research team reports that there is a significant association between poor sleep and feeling older. Inadequate sleep patterns are also linked to more negative perceptions of aging. More than 4400 adults participated over the age of 50.
Those with the worst sleep patterns/quality not only felt older, but also displayed much more negative mindset in reference to their own physical and mental aging. A pessimistic view on aging can seriously negatively impact one's cognitive, physical and overall health as the years go by.
The right mindset is all you need
The importance of sleep at any age is well-documented, but especially important for older adults to attain 7-8 hours of sleep on a nightly basis. Sleep is time for our bodies and minds to rest and recharge which is significantly important for aging. When our brains are in deep sleep that is when they clean up any molecules, proteins, and other particles that could lead to disease, like dementia and alzheimer's. Without this time to eliminate those toxic proteins, our brains end up accumulating them and increasing our risk for developing those disease.
This study was purely observational and cannot establish causation between sleep, aging and mindset. More research has to be done to connect all three and produce a theory that can be implemented into clinical practice. However, it's a good start, and older adults who start to feel older should take some time to take a nap or get extra sleep and improve their perceived youthfulness.
If you are having trouble sleeping and find yourself have more negative perceptions on aging, then please click the orange button below to talk to a sleep expert.