Sleep is important for your physical and emotional health. Sleep may
help you stay healthy by keeping your immune system strong. Getting enough
sleep can help your mood and make you feel less stressed.
Your sleeping area and what you
do during the day can affect how well you sleep. Too much noise, light, or
activity in your bedroom can make sleeping harder. Creating a quiet,
comfortable sleeping area can help. Here are some things you can do to sleep
Use your bedroom only for sleeping and
Move the TV and radio out of your bedroom.
your bedroom quiet, dark, and cool. Use curtains or blinds to block out light.
Consider using soothing music or a "white noise" machine to block out
Your evening and bedtime routine
Having an evening routine and a set bedtime will
help your body get used to a sleeping schedule. You may want to ask others in
your household to help you with your routine.
Get regular exercise but not within 3 or 4
hours before your bedtime.
Create a relaxing bedtime routine. You
might want to take a warm shower or bath, listen to soothing music, or drink a
cup of noncaffeinated tea.
Go to bed at the same time every night.
And get up at the same time every morning, even if you feel
Use a sleep mask and earplugs, if light and noise bother
If you can't sleep
Imagine yourself in a peaceful, pleasant scene.
Focus on the details and feelings of being in a place that is
Get up and do a quiet or boring activity until you feel
Don't drink any liquids after 6 p.m. if you wake up often
because you have to go to the bathroom.
Your activities during the day
Your habits and activities can affect how well you
sleep. Here are some tips.
Exercise during the day. Don't exercise after 5
p.m. because it may be harder to fall asleep.
Get outside during
daylight hours. Spending time in sunlight helps to reset your body's sleep and
Don't drink or eat anything that has caffeine in it,
such as coffee, tea, cola, and chocolate.
Don't drink alcohol
before bedtime. Alcohol can cause you to wake up more often during the
Don't smoke or use tobacco, especially in the evening.
Nicotine can keep you awake.
Don't take naps during the day,
especially close to bedtime.
Don't take certain medicines right before bed. Some medicines may keep you
awake or make you feel hyper or energized. Your doctor can
tell you if your medicine may do this and if you can take it earlier in the
If you can't sleep because you are in great pain or have an
injury, you often feel anxious at night, or you often have bad dreams or
nightmares, talk with your doctor.
Primary Medical Reviewer
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer
Jessica Hamblen, PhD - Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.