Now you may have heard that poor quality sleep increases your risk for heart disease. The problems is; people really don’t understand what poor sleep is. In fact, people who are suffering from sleep apnea and nearly die several times each night as they sleep, wake up in the morning and have absolutely no idea that they almost didn’t wake up!.
In talking to thousands of people, I find that their response to “How are you sleeping?” is a thoughtless, default response. They always respond with “Good.” But if you really dig deeper, you will often find the opposite is true..
It’s kind of like that default response, where you just got into a huge fight with a loved one and you feel horrible. Then you’re walking down the street and somebody says; “How are you doing?,” and you say? “Good” … yeah right. These default responses only prevent us from identifying a problem in our life, and developing the right responses to create beneficial habits.
One of the problems that I’ve identified, in asking people deep probing questions; is that side sleepers often wake up throughout the night or in the morning with a numb or tingly arm, hands or shoulders. Essentially what is happening is their arm is literally sandwiched between their body and their hard mattress, creating pressure on the arm and cutting off the circulation.
This is a huge problem because there is a deep connection between the circulation to the arms and the health of your heart! Let me give you an example. Research has shown that musical conductors have some of the healthiest hearts, and have longer life expectancies because of it. Researchers have attributed their healthy hearts and long lives to the continuous movement of their arms; which increases the circulation in their arms, which somehow keeps their heart and arteries in great condition.
In the book “The Orchestra Conductor’s Secret to Health & Long Life” it explains how “j’arming” (which means arm jogging) is the key to the conductors healthy heart. One good suggestion in the book, is for office workers who are sitting all day to do this j’arming action for just a couple of minutes to maintain a healthy heart.
Lets take a look at another example of this heart/arm connection. When somebody gets a heart attack, what do they grab? Often it’s their arm. So clearly we see that circulation to the heart affects the arms and vice verse. So what we want to do is make sure we are not sleeping on our arms to the point where we are cutting off the circulation. In my opinion it is obvious that much of the heart conditions associated with poor sleep, is a result of cutting off the circulation in your arm, by sleeping on a hard mattress.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death in North America; so it’s not something that we want to play with. It’s well documented that we can lower our risks with diet, exercise and reducing stress levels. But we don’t hear much about the effects of sleeping on a hard surface. Here is what you can do to stop cutting of the circulation in your arms while sleeping.
Stop sleeping on your side; This is going to be difficult for any side sleeper, but this is one of the ways that you can avoid cutting off your circulation in your arms, without spending any money. You can switch to sleeping on your back and you will probably, stop cutting off the circulation in your arms while you are sleeping.
Get a soft mattress topper; Throw it on top of your hard mattress. You want it to have a conforming effect, so that your mattress is not pushing back to hard against the arm. Therefore, allowing the blood to flow through smoothly.
Get a really good customizable bed! A customizable mattress will allow you to change the firmness and the feeling of the mattress and allow you to make sure you get that perfect comfort. This includes that conforming effect I talked about earlier; this way you are not cutting off the circulation in your arm. This is the best option because you will also get the best sleep, since you can customize the mattress to your specific needs. I explain this in detail in my article “How to Buy a Mattress”. You can also get a comprehensive comparison chart of the best customizable beds on the market in my eBook “7 Unusual Habits You Need for Good Sleep”
Your heart is like the conductor of your body, directing all functions and feelings. Make sure you take the necessary steps to protect it.
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