Life is busy, especially around the holidays. We go straight from the hustle of Christmas shopping and holiday parties to the grind of setting and keeping our New Year’s resolutions.
As special as this time of year can be, it is also rather exhausting… which is why you might consider making this resolution for 2016: Get more sleep.
Sleep is not just a luxury. It’s something you need, and failure to get enough of it can have serious consequences on your health. Insufficient sleep is associated with a number of chronic diseases and conditions, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity and depression. As much as a resolution like “Get more sleep” might feel like a copout, it isn’t. It really is a serious step towards living a healthier, happier life.
But how much sleep do you need? Adults of all ages should aim for seven to eight hours of sleep every night. Teenagers need a little bit more and should get nine to ten hours. School-aged children, meanwhile, should get at least ten while pre-schoolers need between eleven and twelve.
As for newborns, they would ideally spend between 16 and 18 hours a day sleeping.
But as you probably know, falling asleep isn’t always as easy as it sounds. If counting sheep isn’t enough to put you out, try following these tips:
Go to bed at the same time each night, and get up at the same time each morning.
Sleep in a quiet, dark and relaxing environment. It shouldn’t be too hot or too cold.
Make your bed comfortable – and ONLY use it for sleep. Do not lay in bed to read, watch TV or listen to music. If you only sleep in your bed, you will become psychologically programmed to become sleepy when you’re in it.
Remove all TVs, computers and other “gadgets” from your bedroom.
Avoid large meals before bedtime.
If, despite following these tips, you still struggle with sleeping, it is possible you may suffer from a sleep disorder. If you believe this to be the case, contact the SOMC Sleep Diagnostic Center at 740-356-8822.