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Ten Tips for Better Sleep


Sleep Disorders Center

Lahey Medical Center, Peabody
One Essex Center Drive
Peabody, MA 01960

1.     If you do not fall asleep within 20 minutes, get out of bed and do something relaxing and distracting.

2.     Avoid housework, bills, work or anything that is too stimulating within two hours of bedtime, or during a nighttime awakening.

3.     Although some people's insomnia is helped by a midday nap, for most, it will interfere with it.

4.     Avoid alcohol within five hours of bedtime.  Alcohol is a poor hypnotic and causes nighttime awakenings.

5.     Avoid caffeine (tea, coffee, chocolate, soda) after noon.  It can cause shallow sleep or nightime awakenings.

6.     Make your bedroom quiet, safe, and relaxing.  Face clocks away from the bed to avoid "counting down" the minutes until morning.

7.     Keep consistent bedtimes and wake times all week.

8.     Schedule "worry time" earlier in the day.  Use this time to resolve problems prior to bedtime.

9.     Do not exercise within four hours of bedtime.

10.   Avoid going to bed on an empty or full stomach.  A light snack may be of value.