March 15th is World Sleep Day, an annual event to celebrate sleep and raise awareness on issues such as sleep deprivation, sleeplessness, the increasing use of sleep medication, and sleep disorders.
When you’re sleeping well it’s wonderful; you wake up feeling refreshed, full of energy and ready to go. But if, like an increasing number of people in the UK, you have trouble sleeping, it catches up with you quickly. You’ll experience low energy, tiredness and low mood, and prolonged periods of sleep problems can lead to a host of other health problems.
And the worst part is that sleep can often be a habit: if you aren’t sleeping well, you become stressed about not sleeping well, and so the next night you don’t sleep well because you’re worried about it. And if you’re sleeping well every night you’ll turn the light out and barely give it a thought.
Dr Nerina Ramlakhan, author of TIRED BUT WIRED, wrote in the Daily Mail this week with handy tips to help your child get to sleep at night, but many of her tips will be very useful for adults too. Adopting a wind-down routine, not using technology such as iPads, computers and smartphones in the 90 minutes before bed, and creating a calm environment to sleep in are just some of the tips she suggests in that article, all of which are designed to help you or your child relax before bed.
This World Sleep Day, stop and think: do you get a good night’s sleep? If so, that’s great. But if not, maybe it’s time to change your routine, and work out what you can do to help yourself. There are plenty of resources available on the World Sleep Day website, and, of course, you can read Dr Nerina Ramlakhan’s book TIRED BUT WIRED.