Sleeping well is crucial to feeling good and performing well. Yet poor sleep is on the rise due to stress, isolation and financial worries caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Enter Dr Giresh Kanji. The stress and pain expert released a new book on April 15 that’s packed with information about why our sleep is disturbed and how we can all improve that by making simple changes. All advice in the book is backed up by science.
If you’ve ever looked at your alarm clock to find it’s 2am and you’re wide awake, or taken hours to get to sleep thanks to your busy mind, this book is for you.
“Even before this pandemic people were working more, sleeping less and staying connected around the clock,” Dr Kanji says. “Poor sleep leads to a loss of energy, fatigue and loss of enjoyment of life and increases risk of long-term health conditions such as depression, heart disease, cancer and dementia.
He has written the book to help people understand why their sleep is disturbed and how to restore
it, rather than placing a Band-Aid on the problem by taking sleeping tablets. “Covid-19 has created unprecedented change,” he says. “There is devastation of families with the loss of loved ones, and many people face emotional turmoil and financial ruin. This will create a tsunami of sleeping difficulties around the world for even the best sleepers.
“The years to follow this pandemic will create more sleepless nights than any other event the world
has seen. I would like to prevent people going through the decades of poor sleep I have experienced. Once poor sleep starts, it can continue for years and decades, and have a devastating effect on our well-being and ability to function.
In Brain Connections: Sleep well and energise, Dr Kanji shares five habits he says will improve sleep and increase energy.
“I hope it offers people suffering stress-related poor sleep an explanation of their symptoms, and treatment options that go beyond medications, leading to a long-term cure and a good night’s sleep.”
An honorary associate professor at Auckland University, Dr Kanji has practised medicine for more than 30 years. He spent more than 27 years studying stress, pain and anxiety. After being plagued by poor sleep for more than four decades, he read thousands of medical papers in an effort to resolve the issue while writing his PhD on stress and pain. He began to make connections between stress and sleep. He now sleeps for 7-9 hours each night – something he says we should all be doing.