Obtaining healthy sleep is important for both physical and mental health. It can also improve productivity and overall quality of life. Everyone, from children to older adults, can benefit from practicing good sleep habits.

There was a study done on sleep-related issues by the Mental Health Foundation that found that people that didn’t get enough sleep were four times as likely to suffer from lack of concentration, have relationship problems and 3 times more likely to be depressed and 2.6 times more likely to commit suicide.

 

Sleep Hygiene

A common finding is that one’s lifestyle leads to sleep disturbance. This is usually phrased as inadequate sleep hygiene, referring to a problem in following generally accepted practices to aid sleep. Sleep hygiene is defined as behaviors that one can do to help promote good sleep using behavioral interventions. The focus of universal sleep hygiene is on modified environmental and lifestyle components that may interfere with sleep, as well as behaviors that may improve sleep.

Do and Don’ts for Good Sleep Hygiene

DOs :

  1. Maintain regular hours of bedtime and arising.

  2. If you are hungry, have a light snack before bedtime.

  3. Maintain a regular exercise schedule.

  4. Give yourself approximately 1 hour to wind down before going yo bed. Have a pre-sleeping routine- take warm bath, meditate or have a quiet time.

  5. If you are preoccupied or worried about something in bedtime, write it down and deal with it in the morning.

  6. If you find your mind racing, or worrying about not being able to sleep during the middle of the night, get out of bed, and sit in a chair in the dark. Do your mind racing in the chair until you are sleepy, then return to bed

  7. Keep the bedroom cool, dark and quiet.

DON’Ts :

  1. Watch the clock so you know how bad your insomnia actually is.

  2. Exercise right before going to bed in order to wear yourself out.

  3. Watch television/ Netflix in before going to bed or when you can’t sleep.

  4. Drink coffee in the afternoon and evening.

  5. If you cannot sleep, smoke a cigarette, drink or pop sleeping pills.

  6. Read in bed when you cannot sleep.

  7. Eat in bed when you cannot sleep.

  8. Exercise in bed.

  9. Talk on the phone in bed.

Tackle Insomnia!