Next weekend, Daylight Savings Time will steal an hour of sleep from most of us. So Monday is perfect timing for National Sleep Awareness Week. Sleep shortage is both common and unhealthy. In a recent survey, the Centers For Disease Control found that almost 5 percent of people were so tired they had dozed off behind the wheel in the last month. For adults, the National Sleep Foundation recommends 7-9 hours of sleep each night. Kids need more (10-11 hours). Some of the top tips for getting enough sleep are:
- Establish a regular bed and wake time
- Establish a consistent, relaxing bedtime routine that doesn’t include starting at bright TV or computer screens.
- Create a dark, quiet, comfortable environment for sleeping
- Avoid nicotine altogether and avoid caffeine close to bedtime
- Avoid alcohol. It may help you fall asleep, but it tends to disrupt sleep during the night.
- Exercise regularly (but not within 3 hours of bedtime)
- If you think you need a sleep aid (prescription or over-the-counter), discuss it first with a healthcare professional.
For more information about getting the Z’s you need, visit the National Sleep Foundation website.