One of the best keys to a healthy day starts even before your day does! Good quality sleep (and enough of it) plays a crucial role in protecting your mental health, physical health, quality of life, and safety. While some people fall outside of the typical range, most adults 18+ need 7-8 hours of quality sleep each night for optimal health. And a lack of sleep not only makes you feel drowsy throughout the day – Sleep deficiency can cause problems with learning, focusing, and reacting. A lack of sleep can cause difficulty in making decisions, solving problems, remembering things, controlling your emotions and behavior, and coping with change.
So how can you improve your sleep?
- Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day
- Try to keep the same sleep schedule on weeknights and weekends
- Start you bedtime routine – and avoid exercise and bright artificial light – an hour before you plan to fall asleep.
- Avoid heavy or large meals within a couple of hours of bedtime, and avoid alcohol before you head to bed.
- Avoid nicotine entirely and caffeine after mid-afternoon.
- Spend time outside each day if you can.
- Keep your bedroom cool, dark, and quiet.
- Find relaxation techniques that work for you and use them before bed.
- Avoid napping more than 20 minutes during the day.