To get a good nights sleep:
- Go to bed at the same time every day.
- Have coffee, tea, pop, and other foods with caffeine only in the morning.
- Avoid alcohol in the late afternoon, evening, and bedtime.
- Avoid smoking, especially in the evening.
- Keep your bedroom dark, cool, quiet, and free of reminders of school, work, or other things that cause you stress.
- Try to solve your problems before you go to bed.
- Exercise several days a week, but not right before bed.
- Avoid looking at phones or reading devices that give off light before bed. This can make it harder to fall asleep.
Because of the limited benefits and substantial risks of sleeping pills, Consumer Reports advises that sleep drugs should be used with great caution. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine no longer recommends sleeping drugs as a first-choice treatment for chronic insomnia, opting instead for cognitive behavioral treatment (CBT).
Patricia Balassone, CNP