Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Having a Well Rested Family

I don't know about you, but when I don't sleep well the night before  it affects how I respond to my husband and children.  Studies have shown many consequences of not getting enough sleep which include:

Increase in accidents
Greater risk for heart attack, high blood pressure, stroke, diabetes, depression, along with may other health conditions.
Premature aging- When you don’t get enough sleep, your body releases more of the stress hormone cortisol. In excess amounts, cortisol can break down skin collagen, the protein that keeps skin smooth and elastic and cause premature aging.
Weight Gain
Memory loss
Weakened immune system

To insure a good night's sleep here are a few tips:

No caffeine or sugar several hours before bed:
For me, I can't have any caffeine after lunch at all. I'm extremely sensitive to caffeine and sugar. If I have even one piece of chocolate I will be up most of the night.  For each person this is different.

Regular bedtime routines:
Children and adults both do well with a regular bedtime routine.  About an hour before bedtime, take a hot shower or bath, have a quiet family devotion, spend time in prayer and reading the Bible.

Keep a journal:
For some, writing in a journal helps clear the mind and allows for a more restful sleep. For me, I keep a list of things I need to get done the next day that way I don't have to spend my time trying to remember all my appointments and things I wish to accomplish.

Keep the temperature in your home no higher than 70 degrees.
Keeping your rooms any warmer than this may cause restless sleep. 

Go for a walk, get some fresh air, play in the garden. Whenever I spend my time outdoors and get plenty of exercise, I never have trouble drifting off to sleep.

Turn off the t.v. and computer at least an hour before bed.
Don't facebook, read the news, check your email, or spend time on pinterest before bed. For me, this is a sure way for me to not have a good night's sleep. You want to relax your mind, not stimulate it.

I can't count how many times I've fallen asleep while praying. It's not because prayer is boring, but because when I pray I am casting all my cares upon the Lord.  Prayer reminds me that I'm not in control, God is Sovereign and is taking care of me.  I don't need to worry about tomorrow, because God already knows the future and He's got me covered! I read a cute quote the other day that made me smile: "If you can't sleep, don't count sheep, talk to the Shepherd".

The amount of sleep we need varies. I know I require at least 8-9 hours of sleep a night.  My husband on the other hand, does well with only 6 hours.  It's important to keep our bodies on a schedule of going to bed around the same time each night and waking up the same time each morning. 

A basic guideline from the national sleep foundation is the following:

Toddlers (1-3 years)- 12 to 14 hours
Preschoolers (3-5 years)- 11-13 hours
School-aged Children (5-10 years)- 10-1l hours
Teens- (10-17 years)-  8.5-9.25 hours
Adults- 7-9 hours

God wants us to be healthy! He doesn't want us to always feel run down and tired.  Take care of your body and ensure that your family is a well rested family. 

The bow cannot be always bent without fear of breaking. Repose is as needful to the mind as sleep to the body… Rest time is not waste time. It is economy to gather fresh strength.

C.H. Spurgeon

Here is the Son of God, who in less than three years achieved far more than kings and generals had ever achieved in a thousand years, taking time out. Why? Well, He knew His needs and limitations – even He couldn’t work twenty-four hours a day seven days a week – and neither can we. But also He could have the confidence to do this because of His quiet, serene knowledge that His time was in His Father’s hands, that He wasn’t going to change the world by one endless round of activity, but by doing things in God’s time in God’s way.

Melvin Tinker

1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.
3 John 1:2
Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul.

1 Corinthians 3:16
Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you?

1 comment:

  1. Great advice and helpful info, Kristin. Thanks! :)



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