Vanessa Roybal, Employee Wellness Health Education Consultant
Stress and sleep are like oil and water- they do not mix well. If our stress levels increase during the day, so do adrenaline and epinephrine. Those two chemicals can remain in the brain while you are sleeping, interrupt your sleep cycle and even cause bizarre dreams.
Many factors can contribute to broken sleep, including adjusting to a new schedule, being stuck at home with low levels of natural light, and not keeping track of the time/day- factors that have increased under the uncertainties of recent events.
The right amount of sleep is critical to our physical and mental well-being. It is even more essential as you try to cope during this pandemic. Sleep helps our bodies empower our immune system, contributes to improved thinking and learning, fights off depression, and improves overall mental health.
Improve Your Sleep
Consume Less Stressful Information. Stick with one international source and one local source for your news. Be mindful of limiting how much time you devote to social media or watching the news.
Spend Time Outdoors. Be sure to open the windows and blinds during the day! Fresh air has positive effects on your sleep cycle and absorbing the natural light helps your body to regulate sleep.
Routine and Schedule. Adults, like babies, need a routine to incorporate steady sequences that provide time cues throughout the day. Waking up, going to bed, and eating meals at a consistent time every day will help your body adjust to your daily schedule.
Limit Blue Light. Working at home and catching up on shows has increased the amount of blue light we are absorbing. Blue light comes from our electronic devices and can interfere with our winding down process. Try to limit the use of electronics for one hour or more before bedtime.
Try using these strategies to help you achieve a more restful night’s sleep.
Employee Wellness offers complimentary individual consultation to benefits-eligible faculty and staff. Use this one-on-one service via phone or Zoom to be the healthiest person you can be! Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.