Q: How can you get more restful sleep?

A: Some believe sleep is a luxury.  Understanding how the quantity and quality of your sleep plays a very important role in your overall health will make you realize it is a necessity. While sleep needs vary from person to person, the average adult needs seven to eight hours nightly.

Sleep affects your overall function during the day. Daily tasks like cooking, caring for children or dependents, driving vehicles or operating machinery, can all become dangerous if your function is affected by lack of sleep.

Beyond safety, many health conditions are linked to lack of sleep such as:

  • Anxiety and depression
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Obesity
  • Heart attacks
  • Strokes

Some ways you can get better sleep are:

  • Going to bed consistently at or around the same time each night helps to develop a regular sleep schedule.
  • Limit caffeine, especially in the hours before you go to bed.
  • Get enough natural light during the day. Walking outside during daylight hours helps!
  • Physical exercise and activity are important for sleep, but try to do it a few hours before you plan to go to sleep.
  • Create a sleeping environment that limits bright lights, noises, and use a mattress that is comfortable and supportive.
  • Stop using devices like computers or smartphones before bed. If you need to, try to use a blue light filter.
  • Avoid alcohol, nicotine, and foods high in sugars or fats.

If you experience continued trouble sleeping, contact your health care professional.  Together you will determine what factors, including sleep disorders may be preventing you from getting the rest you need.

A Healthier You begins from within and a Healthier Community Happens Together!

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