The National Sleep Foundation
Sleep has always been a puzzling phenomenon for many people. In recent times, we’ve seen various researchers venturing into this field, trying to explain and understand the science behind sleep. The ongoing research shows that sleep is a vital necessity to our bodies.
For every person the need to rest and recover is always going to be something which can’t be avoided. As each year goes by people have begun to notice that their lives have started to become busier, more and more people have gotten into the habit of neglecting their normal sleeping routines, in search of money and other necessities.The possibility of distraction is ever present from the latest technological breakthrough. Tv’s computers, smartphones, box sets among many other things have, on one hand altered and changed life for the better by giving us more choice but with this increased choice, they have also made it easier to become distracted and have the potential to erode into valuable sleeping hours.
This reduction in our sleeping hours is detrimental to humans in lots of areas from health related (both physical and mind related) to things that are not all that obvious. Sleep also affects our productivity in the work place and the way people conduct their daily lives on a day by day basis. The increasing trend of people sacrificing sleep for escapism in tv’s and technology at night, has raised concerns across the board, and has left many people asking each other the question How much sleep should you really get every night?
As a result, there is a growing need to educate the masses on healthy sleeping habits and hence this has been the reason for the formation of the National Sleep Foundation. In this article therefore, we are going to discuss the National Sleep foundation touching on its aims and the reasons for its formation in more detail. In addition, we will discuss a few of the Foundation’s achievements in creating awareness on healthy sleeping habits.
History of the National Sleep Foundation
The National Sleep Foundation was founded in 1990 as an independent non-profitable organization. It is devoted to improving the awareness of healthy and safe sleep by providing the public with a better understand of sleep and sleeping disorders, associated with unhealthy sleeping routines. The organization has also been central in supporting education of the masses on sleep advocacy, and has aided in sleep related research for many years.
The National Sleep Foundation is equipped with some of the best experts in the field of sleep and sleep related medical faculties, who have spear headed the achievement of the goals of this organization. The goals of this organization include;
- To increase the knowledge on the relevance of sleep to good health and overall productivity.
- To deal with health and safety problems that may arise from lack of enough sleep and other sleeping disorders.
- To champion scientific research relating to sleep and medicine.
- To support public policies aimed at promoting sleep education, treatments and further research.
Features of the National Sleep Foundation
The National Sleep Foundation is commited to understanding the whole picture with regard to sleep, and provides as much useful information to the lay person on the steet as it does to qualified medical professinals and medical companies who also benefit from the research and valuable information they gather.
1. Sleeping Disorders
The National Sleep Foundation has invested a lot of resources trying to understand some of the diseases that are caused by lack of sufficient sleep, with the aim of trying to find cures for such diseases. They have been able to set aside experts who can study and resolve most of the disorders for example Snoring and Sleep Apnea.
2. Sleep Topics
Well, we all have some questions that need to be answered about sleep. Fortunately, the foundation with the help of well knowledgeable experts and a few brilliants editors, try to educate the masses through occasional discussion of various topics on their website. This in turn has helped majority of the citizens to get the right answers to their questions without having to consult or spend hours searching for relevant independent experts in the field of sleep and its related disciplines.
3. Drowsy Driving
Did you know that lack of adequate sleep can impair your driving skills as well as you judgement and in some cases can have a similar impact that alcohol has on the body? Well, this is a field that has been well-researched over the past number of years and unfortunately it is true. The National Sleep Foundation strives to educate the masses against drowsy driving and reduce the numbers of accidents caused due to such cases into the future. The message they teach could save your life one day if taken on board.
4. Sleep Shop
The sleep shop is a place for users to find ways they can improve their sleeping health, sleep related ailments and disorders, as well as other professional knowledge that one may require. From sleeping stories to tools that you may use to monitor your sleeping habits. The foundation’s sleep shop has it all.
Achievements of the National Sleep Foundation
The main achievements of the organisation are outlined below;
- To help reduce any incidence of sleep-related accidents, the organization has gone out of its way to sponsor a drowsy driving initiative, which educates people on how to curb such incidences and make the roads a safer place. Additionally, the hardworking members of the organization offer prevention week which focuses on educating drivers on the risks associated with drowsy driving.
- The foundation has also been able to inform the public on various ways to develop a healthy sleep pattern and highlight the various benefits of this new healthy sleeping regime. They are also operating a fully functional website which focuses on sleep health, discussing sleep science, designing your bedroom, and the effects age and lifestyle have on sleep.
- Most of the organization’s activities have managed to be covered in the national news media in recent years mainly in the U.S.
Financial Aid and Current Programs
The National Sleep Foundation is funded by a few private individuals, corporations and together with the government who also contribute in order to help it to run smoothly. They also get funding from well-wishers who are attracted to the organization by the progress they are making, as well as the benefits they are providing to people.
The foundation’s main aim is to educate ordinary people on how to incorporate and maintain healthy sleeping routines. The importance of sleep and other health matters that are associated with lack of good sleep are also of major importance to the organisation. They have made it possible to relay the message of good sleep through the various different channels outlined below
1. Sleep Matters
This is an award-winning magazine that the organization has funded which is devoted to topics of sleep. Additionally, they also publish some of the latest advances in the scientific research in the quest of trying to increase the knowledge of the general public.
2. National Sleep Foundation Website
The organization’s website is one of their many successes. In our generation, knowledge through the internet happens to reach more people worldwide, which is an opportunity they haven’t hesitated to use. The website is fully dedicated to educating visitors on potential sleep-deprived disorders, scientific research in the field of sleep, sleep problems and other policy and health issues.
3. Government Interactions
The National Sleep Foundation works with the congress and the federal agencies to help in the implementation of regulatory issues that relate to alertness, sleep and safety. They also advocate for funding in their quest for mass education on sleep related issues, scientific research and other programs.
Reaching Out to the Health-Care Providers
The foundation has also made strides in trying to develop and implement programs that enhance understanding for primary care givers on issues related to sleeping and its related disorders. Some publications that have medical experts as their primary target include Sleep Medicine Alert Newsletter which talks about topics like sleep and pain, melatonin and insomnia. They have also partnered with different sleep centres and hospitals to educate the local communities in our society hence leading to increased awareness.
In conclusion, the National Sleep Foundation has and will continue to make more improvements in our various communities. This shows their dedication and professionalism in helping the masses. Expect more great work from this foundation going forward!