So… you want a good nights sleep? I am seeing a lot of people complaining about not getting enough sleep or not waking up rested on many social media posts. This is bad because it affects our overall mood/ mental health and it can even result in physical illness. What you may not realize about an ongoing lack of sleep is it can lead to things like depression and or anxiety; it can wreak havoc on our relationships (learned by personal experience) and give us a poor work ethic at our jobs.
I cannot really say how much sleep we need as some people need more, some people need less but… the average adult requires eight to nine hours of sleep a day.
After seeing all the social media posts and… not having enough sleep my self I booked an appointment with a psychologist through my local healthcare system. Here is some guidelines for good sleep hygiene:
- •Go to bed & wake up the same time every day – including weekends. This stabilizes your sleep cycle and creates a good habit.
- •Remove as many electronics as you can from your room – There should no bleeps, blinks or glowing lights
- •If you tend to worry or have racing thoughts try to set up a worry time.
- •If you’re still worrying try writing your problems in a journal. It helps describe how you feel and can make a list of things you have to do. Make a pact with your self that you’ll deal with these problems in the morning.
- •Keep the clock away from you. Don’t clock watch.
- •Avoid Naps – They throw off your sleep cycle.
- •Try to avoid cigarettes, alcoholic & caffeinated beverages and heavy meals before bed.
- •Give yourself permission to go to sleep, put away the “to do” list.
- •Make a bedtime routine like reading or watching TV. This helps remind your body that it’s time for bed.
- •Engage in daily exercise – This helps deepen your sleep. Since exercise is a stimulant activity avoid working out a couple hours before bed.
- •Use the bedroom only for sleeping and sex. Your brain will orientate the bedroom with sleep much easier.
Rockyview General Hospital
Alberta Health Services (AHS)
Please note: These are guidelines for information only. If you’re still having trouble sleeping see a doctor.