Most adults report not getting enough sleep on a nightly basis. That is not only rough for the individuals, but it is also bad for the health. If you are among the many, many adults who struggle to fall asleep after a stressful sleep or stay sleeping once you get there, you’re in good company.
A recent report released by the NIH (the National Institute of Health), approximately 33% of all American adults simply don’t get a healthy amount of sleep.
It’s well known that 7-8 hours of sleep is needed to stay at one’s best and also preserve physical health as well as mental health. This is even before adding in the additional problems that stress brings to the table!
So here are some tricks, tips, and helpful guidance to get you better sleep!
– Have a steady sleep schedule. Make bed time the same hour every single night and yes, that also means weekends.
– Figure out your sleep position and find mattresses that side sleepers prefer
– Don’t take late afternoon or evening naps
– Try to keep naps 20 minutes or less
– No alcohol or caffeine late in the day
– Ideally, cut nicotine out of your “diet” completely
– Exercise before 6 p.m.
– Don’t eat a big meal at night right before bed
– Try to avoid late night snacking
– Make your bedroom dark and make sure it’s not too hot
– Create an end of day, before bed routine to relax and get used to “priming” yourself for sleep
Sleep Issues Are a Teen Problem, Too
Teenagers need even more sleep to develop properly, needing 9 hours a night to fully grow and develop. Not getting this, which very few do, can lead to short tempers, impulsiveness, mood swings, and further exacerbate other common problems or issues many teenagers struggle with.
This includes anxiety, depression, and stress, all of which can then again further compound the other issues that were already in play.
The same sleep advice that works to help adults can also apply to helping teenagers get more sleep, with additional focus on some common problems like:
– No screen time before bed, and ideally not even a full hour before bed
– No all-nighters before college (and still not advised even then)!
– Try having a stress journal where you just “brain vomit” everything out so it doesn’t stay inside and simmer
– Minimize how long you can sleep in on weekends