Habits That Are Hurting Your Sleep Quality
Life is pretty busy for teens. You have school, homework, and friends that you devote time to. You may have a job and participate in extracurricular activities as well.
With everything you have going on, it’s not always easy to get a good night’s rest. It’s even harder if you have habits that compromise the quality of sleep you get.
Eating Junk Food Before Bed
Junk food tastes great, but it’s not good to have before bed. It’s easy to overindulge, especially if you eat it while watching TV. Trying to sleep on an overly full stomach can make it harder to fall asleep and could give you indigestion, especially if what you eat has a lot of fat or sugar.
It’s best to not eat a big meal before bedtime regardless of what you eat. If you need to eat before bed, limit yourself to light, nutrient-dense snacks to help your sleep quality.
Looking at Your Phone
How much time do you spend on your phone? While smartphones are commonplace for virtually every teen these days, there are times when it’s important to set the phone aside. The hour or so before you go to bed is one of those times.
Phone screens emit blue light that inhibits your brain’s production of melatonin, your sleep hormone. That makes it harder to sleep well at night. Prolonged exposure to blue light can also damage your eyes. Make putting your phone away for the evening a part of your nightly winding down routine so you can protect your eyes and your sleep.
Not Keeping a Regular Sleep Schedule
You have to be at school at a specific time on weekday mornings, but what about the weekends? If you don’t have something you have to get out of bed for early in the morning, the temptation to stay up late and wake up late is strong. That doesn’t do good things for sleep quality though. It’s better to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on the weekends. That helps your body stay on a specific routine and get used to falling asleep at the same time, promoting better sleep quality.
It’s not enough to just focus on the quantity of sleep you get. The quality matters too. Create habits that support healthy sleep like creating a routine that helps you wind down, keeping your bedroom dark and quiet, limiting your caffeine intake, and being active during the day but avoiding strenuous activities before bedtime. These things will help you preserve your sleep quality so you feel better rested when you wake up.
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