TROUBLESHOOT YOUR ZZZZZS
Targeting sleep problems requires a broad approach because people struggle for a variety of reasons. Here are some commonly asked questions that could help pinpoint your specific issues.
Q. WHAT IF I CAN’T SHUT OFF MY MIND?
A. Some people can’t switch off their thoughts. If this is a problem for you, set aside a ‘worry time’ in the evening to think about what has been happening during the day. This will help put your mind at rest so you’re less likely to stew over problems when you go to bed. Keep the hour before bed as your wind-down time.
Q. WHAT IF I STILL CAN’T GET TO SLEEP, DESPITE MY BEST EFFORTS?
A. Sleep is not something you can force. If you’re not asleep within 20 to 30 minutes of going to bed, get up. Sit quietly in a darkened room. Don’t watch television, use a computer, eat, drink or do housework. When you feel sleepy again, go back to bed. This helps your mind link bed with sleep, and not with being agitated or tossing and turning.
Q. WILL EXERCISE HELP ME SLEEP?
A. As a rule, exercise is good for sleep, but not just before bed. The best times to work out are in the morning and before dinner.
Q. IS THERE ANYTHING I CAN DO DURING THE DAY TO HELP?
A. Some people use their bedroom as a living room, and study, watch television, make phone calls and read books in it. This will make it harder to sleep because your brain will no longer link your bed with sleep. Use your bedroom for sleep and sex only.