5 Tips to Achieve Healthy Sleep



Everybody LOVES to sleep, but some of us have difficulty getting restful sleep throughout the night because we can’t turn our minds off!  Not all sleep is created equal.  Restful and healthy sleep is IMPORTANT to our health!

Continue reading the article for “5 Tips to Achieve Healthy Sleep.”


Parish Physical Therapy in Scott, LA

Is Poor Quality Sleep Causing You to Be Sick?

ZzZzZzZz…Ouch! Neck and back pain!   ZzZzZzZz…Uh oh, I have to run to the bathroom!  ZzZzZzZz…My mind is racing, I have an important project deadline at work.  ZzZzZzZ…This movie is so good, I have to finish it!

Everybody LOVES to sleep, but some of us have difficulty getting restful sleep throughout the night.  Not all sleep is created equal.  Restful and healthy sleep is IMPORTANT to our health!

Whenever our sleep is disturbed or not continuous, our body does not have the time to fully heal or reset itself.  This causes you to feel tired even though you may have “slept” all night long.  Lack of sleep can compound and make a small problem into a BIG problem.  Decreased hormone regulation, increased weight gain, weakened immune system function, and poor mental clarity or focus are just a few of the issues that can occur due to poor sleep.

The recommended amount of sleep for the average adults is 7 hours.  This number can go up or down based on a number of factors, such as: healing from an injury, previous nights of sleep deprivation, stress.

An internal “body clock” regulates your sleep cycle, controlling when you feel tired and ready for bed or refreshed and alert. This clock operates on a 24-hour cycle known as the circadian rhythm. After waking up from sleep, you’ll become increasingly tired throughout the day. These feelings will peak in the evening leading up to bedtime.

According to the National Institute of Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, people who do not sleep enough or wake up often during the night may have a higher risk of:

  • Coronary Artery Disease
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Obesity
  • Stroke

When your body achieves non-REM sleep, your heart rate and blood pressure drop, which causes less stress on your heart and blood vessels.  According to the National Institute of Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, studies have shown that not getting enough quality sleep can also lead to:

  • Higher levels of ghrelin, which increases appetite
  • Llower levels of leptin, which controls hunger
  • Decreased ability to respond to insulin
  • Increased consumption of food, especially fatty, sweet, and salty foods
  • Decreased physical activity

Sleep also helps with learning and the formation of long-term memories. Not getting enough sleep or enough high-quality sleep can lead to problems focusing on tasks and thinking clearly.  This can cause trouble completing tasks at work, a decline in attention span, difficulty learning, and behavioral problems at school or at home.

Sleep provides essential support to the immune system.  In the short-term, the risk of infections has been found to be higher in people who sleep less than six or seven hours per night. Studies have found that a lack of sleep makes you more likely to catch the common cold or the flu.  Lack of sleep has been connected to multiple long-term health problems, and is believed to be related to the negative effects of lack of sleep on your immune system. In people with healthy sleep, inflammation during the night recedes back to a normal level. In people who don’t get enough sleep, inflammation persists.

In other words, a lack of sleep can be really detrimental to your overall health! “So what can I do to get RESTFUL and HEALTHY sleep?”

And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for…

5 Tips for Quality Sleep to Improve Your Health

  1. Establish a realistic bedtime and stick to it every single night

As natural light disappears in the evening, the body will release melatonin, a hormone that induces drowsiness. When the sun rises in the morning, the body will release the hormone known as cortisol that promotes energy and alertness.  Going to sleep and waking up at an appropriate time helps your body to achieve RESTFUL and HEALTHY sleep.


  1. Create a comfortable sleeping environment and maintain low light levels in your bedroom

An ideal sleeping environment is quiet, dark, and cool. It is important to assess body positioning and posture while lying in bed to make sure you are not stressing or straining any muscles or ligaments.  This means finding an appropriate pillow for your neck and mattress for your back to allow for RESTFUL and HEALTHY sleep.  Different pillows are needed for back, side, and stomach sleepers to help maintain your neck and back in a proper postural alignment. Parish Physical Therapy can help evaluate your posture and assist you with making the right choices when choosing your pillows and mattresses!


  1. Put away electronics at least 30 minutes before your normal bedtime

Blue light from a cell phone is an artificial color that mimics daylight.  If you are scrolling through your phone at night, this can alter your normal sleep cycle and increase your level of alertness. Also turn off the TV! Those murder mystery documentaries or suspenseful TV shows can increase your anxiety, cause you to stay awake longer, and prevent you from getting RESTFUL and HEALTHY sleep.


  1. Get at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise a week

Yes…exercise helps to relax and tire your body in preparation for achieving HEALTHY sleep.  For substantial health benefits, adults should do at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of intense exercise.  Preferably the exercise should be spread throughout the week. Adults should also do muscle strengthening activities of moderate or greater intensity that involve all major muscle groups on 2 or more days a week.  In addition, older adults should also complete exercise that includes balance training.  Older adults should determine their level of effort for physical activity relative to their level of fitness. Older adults with chronic conditions should understand whether and how their conditions affect their ability to do regular physical activity safely.  If you need assistance with determining what level of physical activity you can complete safely, please contact us!


  1. Come see Parish Physical Therapy to heal your PAIN

Acute and chronic pain can lead to altered sleep patterns, poor quality sleep, and lead to worsening of chronic pain symptoms.  If you are unable to sleep, your body is unable to heal itself.  According to a research article in Pain Medicine, “Individuals with chronic pain and sleep disturbances have greater symptom severity, longer duration of symptoms, more disability, and additional comorbidities.”

So how can you decrease your pain to sleep restfully and allow for FULL and PROPER healing?

Come see us at Parish Physical Therapy!  Our staff of highly skilled therapists can decrease or eliminate your pain by utilizing the best hands-on, evidenced based techniques!

If you or somebody you know is suffering with sleep disturbances caused by pain, DON’T WAIT. We can HELP YOU NOW!

Call or message us on Facebook ASAP





For additional information on improving quality of sleep and sleep habits, visit the following websites:






If any of this information has benefited you or someone that you know may benefit from seeing a Physical Therapist, Contact Us NOW at Parish Physical Therapy to speak with a Physical Therapist. I would love the opportunity to help empower YOU to live your best life!

Jessica & Chad Jimenez, PT, DPT

Owners of Parish Physical Therapy

Woman Lying Awake Next to Her Husband

Light from a TV or Cell Phone Can Disturb Sleep

Older Woman Lying with Hand on Head

Poor Quality Sleep Can Worsen Chronic Pain and Headaches

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Restful Sleep is Important for Your Health

Informational Flyer On Healthy Sleep

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