Many adults are so busy tending to their families and working that they don’t make time to get the recommended amount of sleep. Adults should be getting seven to nine hours of sleep every night to be at their best. With adequate sleep, people should feel alert for the entire day. Not getting the recommended sleep could lead to poor concentration, irritability, and decreased work production.
There are some steps people can take on their own to improve sleep, especially if the problem mainly consists of falling asleep or remaining asleep. Try to:
- Keep a strict schedule of going to bed and getting up
- Avoid naps during the day
- Do not watch television, eat or read in bed
- Get out of bed and do something productive if unable to sleep
- Increase exercise during the day, but not within two to three hours of going to bed
- Choose relaxing activities in the evening such as bathing, reading, and other restful hobbies
- Avoid caffeine, alcohol and tobacco
- Make sure the bedroom is safe, comfortable and reasonably quiet
If these ideas don’t help, it could be a sign of a sleep disorder. People should discuss sleeping problems with their primary healthcare provider.