How Much Sleep Should I Get?

How Much Sleep Should I Get?

This entry was posted in Health FAQs on by .
  • Sleep as much as needed to feel refreshed and alert during the following day, but not more. Many poor sleepers stay in bed too long or get up too late in the morning after a poor night.
  • Train yourself that bed is for sleeping and intimacy only. It is not the place to watch TV, do work, or listen to music.
  • If you are unable to sleep within 20 minutes, do not stay in bed and toss and turn. Get out of bed and go to another room. Involve yourself in activity that is not exciting or stimulating and when you are drowsy, return to bed. Repeat this cycle as needed.
  • A regular wake-up time in the morning is essential for resetting your biological clock and improving insomnia. Set an alarm, if needed, and get up at the same time every morning, regardless of how much you slept during the night.
  • Make sure your bedroom is quiet, comfortable, and safe.
  • Put your bedroom clock in a place where you cannot see the time lying in bed.
  • Try to keep yourself physically fit. Regularly exercised bodies seem to sleep better. Exercise before 7pm since later exercise can cause difficulty in falling asleep.
  • Napping can be refreshing if it does not interfere with the following night’s sleep. If you have difficulty sleeping during the following night, then do not nap, no matter how much you are tempted.
  • A light snack 30 to 60 minutes before bedtime may help. Caffeine in coffee, tea, chocolate or other beverages and foods disturbs sleep. Avoid caffeine as much as possible, especially in the late afternoon or evening.
  • Nicotine is a central nervous stimulant and chronic tobacco use may disturb sleep.
  • Avoid using alcohol in the evening. While alcohol may make it easier for you to get to sleep, it disturbs sleep later in the night.
  • All sleeping medications become ineffective if used on a regular basis. Since some medications may need to be reduced slowly consult your physician for the proper way to reduce your sleeping medication.
  • Relaxation techniques may be of some value in improving insomnia.