We’ve all heard about dangerous side effects caused from lack of sleep. From driving drowsy (the culprit in over 100,000 auto crashes a year in the US*) to accidents and injuries on the job, sleep deprivation is an expensive and deadly side effect of our busy lives. And adults aren’t the only victims. Lack of proper sleep effects the grades, behavior, and the ability to complete simple tasks for hundreds of thousands of children in the US each year.
Luckily, we continue to gain better insight into sleep deprivation through countless studies and statistics. Organizations like The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) are solely dedicated to improving sleep health and safety. By focusing on education, public awareness, and advocacy of healthy sleep, the NSF is making huge strides in the war on sleeplessness.
Visit NSF’s sister site, Sleep.org, for great yearly sleep study statistics, take the Sleep IQ Quiz, or get tips on the importance of sleep during the teenage years. You can also browse a huge selection of hand-picked NSF sleep products to help make your bedroom a sleep sanctuary. Along with great gadgets like the Dohm Sound Conditioner, PureCare’s entire line of clinically proven mattress and pillow protectors are all official products of the National Sleep Foundation.
Having trouble falling asleep (and staying there)? Try out these tips and tricks from the NSF:
- Stick to the same sleep schedule. Whether it’s Friday night or Monday morning, try keeping your bedtime and wake-up call consistent in order to regulate your body's clock. Avoiding naps (especially in the afternoon) will also help keep you on track.
- Exercise, even a light workout, is better than no activity at all.
- Design your sleep space for optimal relaxation by eliminating light, noise, and other distractions. Find the right mattress and pillows for you—your entire sleep surface should be comfortable and supportive.
- Alcohol, cigarettes, and caffeine can disrupt sleep. Avoid eating large (or spicy) meals for two to three hours before bedtime. Try a light snack 45 minutes before bed if you’re still hungry.
- Your body and mind need time to calm down after a long day. Finding a relaxing bedtime ritual is a great way to set the stage for deep, restful sleep.
- If you can't sleep, go into another room, and do something relaxing until you feel tired. Eliminate work materials, computers, and televisions from your pre-sleep routine.