Social distancing, sheltering in place; these are terms we’re all intimately familiar with now. Staying at home means drastically altering existing routines and trying to find a new normal. Is it impacting your sleep?
If it is, you’re likely not alone. When we defer from our usual daily lives, all of our routines are upended, including the time we go to bed, wake up, and even the hours of sleep we’re catching. If your sleep is suffering, check out these expert-backed tips to help you find a new sense of normalcy so you can keep your sleep health and immunity in tact.
Take advantage of the extra time at home
With many of us slowing our daily lives down, you’ll likely have more time to catch up on sleep. Without the need to commute or the option to go to social gatherings, time at home has significantly increased. Perhaps you can take this time to schedule the proper amount of sleep you need! Experts recommend at least seven hours nightly, but maybe you can shoot for more. You can check out the SleepScore App to get gentle bedtime reminders to keep you accountable.
Keep up with daytime cues
One surefire way you can try to keep your sleep habits strong is to keep the rest of your day on some kind of schedule. Our experts recommend trying to be vigilant about keeping your mealtimes at the same time each day. You may be able to adjust your new meal schedule based on having more time at home, but be sure to keep the routine each day. This new routine can help you keep your bedtime and wake time consistent.
Since the light in your home is likely dim compared to outside, you can also prioritize getting outside daily to help your sleep. Aim for 45 minutes outside daily.
Just because the gym is closed doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your physical activity. Try a 45-minute walk outside to get that sunshine and keep your legs going. This can help you feel more tired later when you’re ready for bed. There are also a wide variety of free workouts available from the comfort of your own home!
Reduce your news intake
Being at home all day, you may be tempted to leave the news on all day to get the latest COVID-19 related updates. Or you may be constantly refreshing your online news to see what’s happening in real-time. While staying informed is always a good thing, you may be getting information overload, causing unnecessary stress and anxiety throughout your day. Try to get an update only once or twice per day, and then focus on other things. The timing is important too: be sure to take time to wind down before bed and divert your thoughts from the news so you can fall asleep easier.