Sleep hygiene is all about establishing and maintaining good sleep habits. Following these guidelines will lead to good sleep hygiene and will help you optimize your sleep.
- Avoid caffeine four to six hours before bedtime. Excessive consumption of tea, coffee or cola drinks during the day may disrupt your nighttime sleep.
- Avoid nicotine near bedtime and during nighttime awakenings.
- Alcohol at bedtime may actually disrupt rather than help your sleep. Use alcohol in moderation and know that even though alcohol use near bedtime may cause sedation and help you with sleep onset, it may also cause you to awaken later in the night.
- Don’t go to bed hungry. Eating a light snack near bedtime may help you sleep, but a heavy meal too close to bedtime may interfere with your sleep.
- Do not exercise before sleep. Avoid strenuous exercise within three to four hours of your bedtime although exercise late in the afternoon can help to deepen your sleep. Exercise is alerting and raises your body temperature. You may want to begin exercising after you sleep instead.
- Minimize noise, light and excessive temperatures. Try wearing earplugs or use a white noise machine or a fan to block out other noises. Lower the room temperature (a cool temperature improves sleep).
- Take a warm bath.
- Don’t activate your brain by looking at a clock or doing other stressful mental activities.
- Go to bed when sleepy hopefully about the same time every day.
- Maintain a regular schedule even on weekends and days off. If you can’t get enough sleep, naps as short as 15 minutes can be helpful.
If you have tried some of these tips and you still don’t get enough sleep and you still feel tired, it may be time to seek professional help at Alto Sleep Clinic.