Sleep Hygiene

Do you have trouble falling asleep?  Often times one can be so tired, that when they put their head on the pillow, they become wide awake.  That’s frustrating.  Several factors can contribute to poor sleep patterns.  One major cause of sleep problems is cell phone use at bed time.  Studies have shown that the light of the cell phone screen causes disturbances in circadian rhythms.  I’ve done this experiment myself to see if it was true.  Exploring several YouTube videos or online shopping on my phone has resulted in me tossing and turning till 2 am!  Phone use at bedtime is something I no longer participate in.  Reading a book helps me relax and calms my mind.  Speaking of mind, that can be another culprit in poor sleep.  Stress and anxiety can stimulate rapid thought patterns at bedtime.  Often times people going through difficult times will not be able to shut their thoughts off.  Worries about tomorrow, the next day, or next year tend to taunt the anxious mind.  This is a very difficult thing to combat, but there are resources to help.  Journaling your thoughts may be useful.  The physical act of transferring your thoughts onto a piece of paper can actually make them less powerful.  Another action that can help improve sleep quality is going to bed at the same time every night.  If possible, this can train your body to know when it can shut down to recharge for the next day.  If you’re struggling with sleep, these are a few elements I have incorporated into my sleep routine.  It has helped tremendously, and I am able to get a good night’s rest.

-Ashley Fazekas

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