Make Sleep a Priority
The effects of sleep deprivation are cumulative. If you miss a few hours of sleep for several days in a row, it can feel like the equivalent of skipping one entire night of sleep. Sleep deprivation may also impair attention, memory, alertness, concentration, judgment, problem solving and reasoning as well as increase your risk of accidents.
Sleep deprivation negatively impacts the immune system. Research also suggests that sleep deprivation may lead to weight gain, high blood pressure, cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, bone loss and depression to name a few. According to Eve Van Cauter of the University of Chicago, a “lack of sleep disrupts every physiologic function in the body.”
Reduce Your Stress
Wind Down Before Bed
Be sure to lower lights in the hours prior to bed time and implement a relaxing, pre-bedtime ritual to help wind down and prepare for sleep. You may want to try some non-stimulating, non-engaging non-fiction reading instead of watching TV before bed.
Replace Your Mattress
Also, make your bed! Respondents of a sleep survey reported feeling better about going to bed and sleeping longer when their bed was made.
Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol Before Bed
Avoid alcohol close to bedtime. Alcohol alters sleep quality and often serves to reduce total sleep time. Research has demonstrated that while a drink before bedtime may help you fall asleep; you’re more likely to wake up not feeling as rested or refreshed. Alcohol is disrupting to the second half of the sleep period and often causes middle of the night or early morning awakenings. Avoiding alcohol 4 – 6 hours before bedtime is likely to improve your sleep quality.
Please note – always consult with a sleep professional for sleep problems that persist.
You can also enter to win a new mattress for yourself! Check out the Sleepocalypse Sweepstakes http://on.fb.me/10qHPkI for a chance to win!
Join Me in the #BetterSleep Twitter Party this Thursday May 23rd at 9pm ET To celebrate Better Sleep Month, the Better Sleep Council is hosting a twitter party. Come join us for helpful tips on how you can get a better night’s sleep. We will also be giving away over $200 in gift cards!