Build Healthy Sleep Habits
One of the fundamental ways how to achieve a good night’s sleep is to set up the right routine – going to bed and getting up at the same time every day.4
This regular sleep/wake schedule aims to maximize synchrony between physiological sleep drive and circadian rhythms to support stable sleep patterns.5 Moreover, building a habit through a consistent sleep routine makes it easier to fall asleep quickly and reduce awakenings during the night.6
- Habit is sleep's best friend. The first step is to make consistency a priority.
- Pick up a bedtime and wake time, which you can stick to, and which will allow you to have sufficient time of sleep.
- To find out how many hours of sleep you need, you can keep a sleep diary for a couple of weeks.
- After waking up in the morning, write down when you went to bed, how long it took you to fall asleep (just an estimation), how long were you awake during the night, and when you woke up in the morning to get up from the bed.
- Calculate your average sleep duration per night and add approximately 30 minutes to define the ideal time of your new “sleep window”. Most of the adult population needs 7 to 9 hours of sleep.
The most important and challenging part is to stick to the new sleep schedule, ideally during both working days and free days. You may find it hard to adjust to this new sleep schedule at the beginning – it´s normal. If it is not possible to follow your new sleep routine seven days a week, at least four days a week is likely to make some difference!
Build Healthy Sleep Habits
- Barros, M. B. D., Lima, M. G., Ceolim, M. F., Zancanella, E., & Cardoso, T. A. M. D. (2019). Quality of sleep, health and well-being in a population-based study. Revista De Saude Publica, 53. doi:ARTN 8210.11606/s1518-8787.2019053001067
- Freeman, D., Sheaves, B., Goodwin, G. M., Yu, L. M., Nickless, A., Harrison, P. J., . . . Espie, C. A. (2017). The effects of improving sleep on mental health (OASIS): a randomised controlled trial with mediation analysis. Lancet Psychiatry, 4(10), 749-758. doi:10.1016/S2215-0366(17)30328-0
- Chen, X. L., Gelaye, B., & Williams, M. A. (2014). Sleep characteristics and health-related quality of life among a national sample of American young adults: assessment of possible health disparities. Quality of life research, 23(2), 613-625. doi:10.1007/s11136-013-0475-9
- Phillips, A. J. K., Clerx, W. M., O’Brien, C. S., Sano, A., Barger, L. K., Picard, R. W., . . . Czeisler, C. A. (2017). Irregular sleep/wake patterns are associated with poorer academic performance and delayed circadian and sleep/wake timing. Sci Rep, 7(1), 3216. doi:10.1038/s41598-017-03171-4
- Stepanski, E. J., & Wyatt, J. K. (2003). Use of sleep hygiene in the treatment of insomnia. Sleep Medicine Reviews, 7(3), 215-225. doi:DOI 10.1053/smrv.2001.0246
- Carney, C. E., Edinger, J. D., Meyer, B., Lindman, L., & Istre, T. (2006). Daily activities and sleep quality in college students. Chronobiol Int, 23(3), 623-637. doi:10.1080/07420520600650695