How Sleep Experts Cope When They’re Sleep Deprived

When was the last time you were sleep-deprived? If you’ve ever been up all night with a newborn baby or spent the night tossing and turning, you know how terrible it can feel to be running on no sleep. While most of us need between seven and eight hours of sleep a night to feel alert and rested, a recent study finds that nearly half of Americans are sleep-deprived on a regular basis.

Unfortunately, there’s no quick fix for sleep deprivation, but there are some tricks and tips that can make the next day more bearable. Here’s what sleep specialists do to cope after a night of little to no sleep.

  • Don’t stress about it Fiona Barwick, the director of the sleep and circadian health program at Stanford Health Care, reminds herself not to worry when she is low on sleep. “If we don’t sleep well one night, we’ll sleep better the next night,” she explains. “If we worry about it, however, our sleep will be worse.”
  • Expose yourself to light - Daylight sends a signal to our brain that it’s time to get up and be active, so Barwick says it’s important to expose yourself to some bright light first thing in the morning.
  • Have some caffeine, but not too much - Coffee helps because caffeine blocks adenosine, a chemical in the body that increases the need for sleep. But too much coffee can lead to a crash and if you drink it too late, it could interfere with sleep later on.
  • Take a catnap - A daytime snooze can help improve alertness and memory, but keep it short, as DrWissam Chatila says a longer nap can actually negatively impact cognitive function and make it harder to finish tasks.
  • Go for a walk - When Barwick can’t nap, she heads outside for a walk. Even a 10-minute walk can “significantly reduce stress, boost your mood and increase alertness,” research shows. Plus, she says it can build up our sleep drive, which should help you doze off that night.

Source: Huff Post

Sponsored Content

Sponsored Content