I Can’t Sleep!!….Now What?

A few facts and tips about sleep…

Insomnia is…. when you have a hard time falling asleep, or difficulty falling back to sleep after awakening in the night, or are not getting much energy from your sleep.

 Sleep is a necessary and very important part of daily life. Even though it is so important, many people wake up thinking:

 “That was the worst sleep ever, how I am supposed to have a good day now!?”

 Many different things that are happening in our lives can disrupt our sleep. The most common reasons we are not getting enough quality sleep are:   having a busy brain at bedtime; stress (whether we are conscious of it or not); diet; not enough physical activity; and our health/nutritional status. Sleep researcher, Richard Bootzin has outlined a list of behaviours that will help facilitate restful sleep:

  • avoid caffeine after lunchtime
  • avoid alcohol for 3 hours before bedtime
  • avoid looking at the clock
  • avoid long naps during the day  (if you do nap, it is best to keep them to 10-20 minutes)
  • get up at the same time every day
  • have a bedtime routine
  • use your bed only for sleep  (do homework at a desk; watch T.V. in a different room)
  • if you haven’t fallen asleep after 20-25 mins, get up and do simple tasks that will calm your mind so you can then return to bed and rest.

If all you can think about is crawling back into bed for “just a little bit longer” and would like to learn more about the sleep cycle, bedtime relaxation techniques and how to create good sleep habits to decrease insomnia, the “Better Sleep Program”  begins October 1.

To find out more information visit www.uoguelph.ca/~ksomers or call 519-24-4120 ext. 52662

If only it was this easy for everyone to sleep…..

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