Better Sleep Month (May)

Have you ever shown up to work in a bad mood? A lack of sleep might be the reason you feel grumpy. May is Better Sleep Month, and research has shown that getting a better night's sleep can improve everything from your mood to your work productivity. A full 44% of American's admit that a lack of sleep has caused them to show up to work in an unpleasant mood. Another 17% have admitted to napping at work to make up for lost sleep! Studies estimate nearly $150 billion is lost yearly in absenteeism and lost productivity because of workers having too little sleep.

Getting 7.5-8.5 hours of sleep is optimal, but some people require up to 10 hours per night. The first step is to know what your needs are, and then follow these ten tips for a better night's sleep.

  1. Make sleep a priority and keep a consistent bedtime.
  2. Create a bedtime routine that is relaxing.
  3. Create a room that is dark, quiet, comfortable and cool for the best possible sleep. Try using black-out curtains and keep the room temperature between 60°-65° F.
  4. Check your mattress and pillow. If your mattress is five to seven years old, it may be the cause of your restless nights.
  5. The bedroom should have two purposes: sleep and intimate acts only.
  6. Exercise regularly, but complete workouts at least two hours before bedtime.
  7. If you sleep with a partner, make sure your mattress has enough room. A full-sized bed only has as much sleeping space as a baby's crib for each person!
  8. Avoid nicotine (e.g., cigarettes, tobacco products) close to bedtime; it can lead to poor sleep.
  9. Avoid caffeine and alcohol close to bedtime.
  10. Finish eating at least two to three hours before bedtime.

A full night's sleep can even result in an increase in your workout endurance. For more information, visit the Better Sleep Council's website at www.BetterSleep.org or send a letter requesting more information to the following address:

Better Sleep Council
501 Wythe Street
Alexandria, VA 22314-1917

Article provided by Teri Brown, Intern from James Madison University working with Dana Breeding, RN Health Educator of Community Wellness at Augusta Health. To contact Dana Breeding, RN, relating to the information in this article, please call (540) 332-4988 or (540) 932-4988.