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Insomnia

You have identified a change in your habits or sleep environment as a possible source of your insomnia. Most people are able to adjust to changes in their work and sleep schedule as time passes. Your strategies to improve your sleep should address the change in your sleep environment, and you should also consider these strategies

  • Avoid alcohol and smoking, especially in the evening.

  • Avoid going to bed hungry.

  • Avoid daytime naps, and sleep only as much as you require.

  • Maintain a regular bedtime.

  • Establish an active daytime lifestyle that allows you to go to bed ready for rest. It is preferable that you complete any vigorous exercise four or five hours prior to your bedtime.

  • Reduce the mental stimulation that you experience after you have put yourself to bed. This means discontinuing bedtime television, reading, and conversation.

  • Reduce noise stimulation within your bedroom. This may require the use of a device that can drown out interesting noises with a monotonous sound, such as a fan or a radio that is tuned to static between stations.

  • Seek training in relaxation or "biofeedback" techniques, such as tightening and relaxing each of your muscles in a planned order.

Most people who have had a change in their sleep environment do not require medications to assist with sleep. If your sleep problems do not respond quickly to simple strategies to improve your sleep, you may obtain relief from a doctor's prescription for a sleep aid to use for a short term (typically less than two weeks). Over-the-counter sleep treatments can cause symptoms that persist into daytime hours and are not recommended.

Click here for more information on insomnia.


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