How to sleep better
Be screen smart
You’ve probably heard that screens are the enemy of good sleep. That’s not always true. It really depends on how you use them. To minimise the disruptiveness of screens to sleep cycles:
- Choose to watch rather than interact with screens (eg. Netflix instead of Instagram)
- Dim your screen brightness
- Reduce waking blue light by turning devices to “night mode”
Remember those circadian rhythms
It’s common for your body clock to move forward at puberty. As a teenager, a bit of sleeping in isn’t “lazy” – rest is a question of health, not morality. Problems arise when sleep hours get so skewed they start to disrupt your life.
If you are regularly sleeping in more than a couple of hours later on weekends than you do throughout the week, it could confuse your body clock. Instead, try get some getting consistent sleep throughout the week and weekends and this may help you feel better overall.
Talk about times
For younger teenagers, it can be useful to help them maintain a consistent sleep pattern. Set yourself a time to get to bed and switch of the active use of screens. This will help your body to build better sleep patterns and help you fall asleep easier.
Steer clear of naps
Napping can seem like a quick-fix for poor sleep cycles, but when done regularly, it can sometimes actually reinforce them. So ditch the nap and focus on getting enough quality sleep at night rather than making up lost sleep at odd hours.
If you are getting less sleep than your body needs it is normal for your emotions to be affected. If this is the case, try not to take weary or irritable moods perfectly, and remember that this is a physiological effect of sleeplessness.
The flipside is that getting more rest can have a huge positive effect on your well being and mental health.