Sleep well to avoid fatigue after change of body routine
Earplugs and eye masks work wonders for getting into and staying in a deep sleep.
Dubai - Make a plan before Ramadan which fits in with your schedule, follow something that you can stick to as best as possible.
Many people recognise Ramadan as a month in which one tends to remain awake at night and sleep during the day. The sudden change of eating habits and timing, from day to night (fasting during daytime and eating at night) are accompanied by some physiological changes in the body, said Dr Hady Jerdak, specialist internal medicine, pulmonary diseases, sleep disorders at Medcare Hospital.
"Disrupting the sleep cycle can have consequences on our health. It alters our immune system and affects our hormonal secretions. Patients who do not sleep well are the risk of developing viral illnesses and developing fatigue and tiredness," he said.
"Headache and lack of concentration are common symptoms of sleep deprivation. Adults usually sleep seven to nine hours per day and adolescents need more. Some of the symptoms of sleep deprivation that people experience include a headache, lack of concentration, dizziness, anxiety, depression and fatigue."
Good quality sleep consists of four to five cycles of sleep where each cycle has 40 per cent superficial sleep, 40 per cent deep sleep and 20 per cent rapid eye movement phase or dream phase.
"We usually do more deep sleep at the beginning of the night and more dreaming at the end of the night. During Ramadan, we are faced with a disruption of the normal sleep cycle since we need to wake up early to have suhoor and sleep late in addition to eating heavily before sleep," he said.
Tips to ensure good quality sleep> Make a plan before Ramadan which fits in with your schedule, follow something that you can stick to as best as possible.
> Schedule times of worship.
> Find a quiet place away from the workstation, such as your car, and take a 20-minute nap when needed. Power naps are naps that are less than 30 minutes and usually, the person stays in superficial sleep. It Increases alertness and improves learning and working memory. Further, it prevents burnout and reverses information overload for the brain. Overall, a nap heightens your senses and creativity and improves mood. It is highly recommended.
> Ensure your sleep environment is quiet and dark to get quality sleep without distracting factors.
> Staying away from gadgets like mobile phones and laptops is also proven to improve sleep as light signals the brain to remain awake and alert.
> Earplugs and eye masks work wonders for getting into and staying in a deep sleep.
> Do not consume heavy, calorie-loaded and sugar-rich foods at Iftar, it can affect the quality of your sleep. Also, avoid very spicy foods and fried foods.
> Avoid coffee and caffeine-containing products, as there are stimulants and can interfere with sleep.
> Lastly, avoid processed and salty foods, which are high in sodium as they will cause dehydration.
> Sleep at least two hours after Iftar and don't have a heavy Suhoor if you wish to sleep after that.
> Sleeping in a way to ensure that we stay awake after Suhoor is beneficial since sleeping after a heavy meal is not healthy. Hydrating ourselves well is also very important.