Sleep: Good for the Mind, Body and Soul
Sleep has long been thought to be a restorative process, essential to all daily body and brain functions. We all need sleep—it rejuvenates the thought, healing, and bodily processes.
“Good sleep hygiene,” refers to steps that can lead us to a healthy sleep life. Bedtime “rituals” can enhance a good sleep experience and add to one’s own health and well-being.
“ BED-ER” BED RULES
1. Don’t go to bed unless you
are sleepy. If you are not sleepy, then do something else—read a book, listen to soft music or browse a magazine. Find something relaxing, but not stimulating, to take your mind off worries. This will relax your body and distract your mind.
2. If you are not asleep in 20 minutes, then get out of bed. Go to another room. Your bedroom should be where you go to sleep, it is not a place to lie awake bored. Once you feel tired then go back to the bedroom to sleep.
3. Don’t stare at the clock. Again, use your internal clock to gauge time. Watching the clock can increase frustration.
4. Set an alarm to get up at the same time every morning and follow up at the same time even on time off.
5. Avoid taking naps if you can. Only nap if it has always been part of your lifestyle. If you do nap, keep it less than an hour.
6. Keep a regular schedule to keep your inner clock running smoothly.
7. Do not consume caffeine six hours prior to bedtime.
8. Do not go to bed hungry, but also do not consume a “heavy” meal prior to bed. Milk and turkey products do contain some elements that our conducive to sleep.
9. Do not perform strenuous activities/exercise four to six hours prior to bed.
10. Create a comfortable sleep environment (cool is better than hot). Keep your room as dark as possible and quiet. Less noise means more sleep. Perhaps, use a fan or soothing music.
11. Do not use your bedroom for work activities. The bedroom should be a stress free zone.
12. Avoid sleeping pills, or use cautiously. Most doctors do not prescribe for more than a period of three weeks. Do not use alcohol while taking sleeping pills.
Remember: Sleep does a body GOOD!
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Written By: Sheila Leggett RRT, RPSGT, RST, Springfield Clinic Sleep Disorders Center Manager