Why You May Be "Jet Lagged" This July 4th

posted by Dan Mitchinson - 

Hey, it's a holiday week...July 4th...which means some of you will be taking a long weekend and saying up late or getting up earlier or later than you normally would during the week. Before you do that, think about this. Up to 70 million of us in this country have a sleep disorder. I guess I'm one of those...and chances are you are too according to statistics. More of us than we realize suffer from sleep deprivation or have some type of sleep disorder. I guess I fall into both those categories. I've been trying to deal with a sleep disorder for awhile now, and I think I'm getting closer to a solution.

I've blogged about meeting with a sleep specialist, and how, on average, I was waking up between 40 and 47 times an HOUR when I'm at my worst. Think about that...I was averaging less than 90 seconds of sleep before I "woke up."

The doctor I've been meeting with had a great analogy. He said "when you keep the hours you do during the week, then you try to change them on the weekend (or holiday like July 4th if you have the day off), your body can't adjust. It's in a constant state of jet lag." 

I wake up around 1:15 or 1:30  five days a week. I try to get to bed by 6:30 or 7 most nights. During the weekend I want to see my family, so I don't go to bed until 10:30 or late,r and I'm up around 6:30 in the morning. So what I'm doing is re-setting my body's internal clock...but it can't keep up with the changes, so it's constantly in a state of jet-lag (think what you feel like when you fly from Sacramento to New York. Rule of thumb is it takes one day for every time zone you cross for your body to re-adjust it's internal clock. So think about that when you stay up past your bedtime this 4th of July holiday or weekend!

Dan Mitchinson

Dan Mitchinson

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