TUCSON, Ariz. — Studies show many people are having a tough time sleeping during these unprecedented times. Sleep is crucial to your physical and mental health.
“Things like memory regulation, emotion regulation, learning and the ability to organize things to make decisions,” said UArizona Sleep and Health Research Program Director Michael Grandner.
The most common problems are not being able to detach before bed, waking up in the middle of the night, changes in sleep schedule, and vivid dreams or nightmares.
“The airplane doesn’t go from in the air to stopped at the gate right away. It needs to come in for a landing and it need to be gradual and then you still need to slow down a little bit.”
Luckily Grandner says sleep is highly trainable.
“If you are going to have a screen in that last half hour make it something that doesn’t get your mind going, doesn’t get your emotions going, make something that help wind you down.”
He recommends setting an alarm to remind you to power down a half hour before bed. Budget time to worry about things and then switch your mind to more neutral topics. Get some fresh air and sunlight in the mornings and if you end up tossing and turning- break the cycle.
“If you are lying in bed 30 minutes and sleep is not coming get up and reset and try again maybe in five minutes or it might take you an hour before you're ready.”
Also, try not to let sleep stress you out.
“The good news is you don’t have to have perfect sleep to have sleep that is perfectly good.”