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Shift-Work Sleep Disorder

Shift-Work Sleep Disorder

Many people have sleep problems and don't get enough sleep. You may not be able to fall asleep right away or stay asleep. You may wake up early and not be able to fall back to sleep. Sometimes, when you wake up in the morning you may not feel rested and then you may feel tired or sleepy all day. You may feel grouchy, forget things, or have trouble focusing. Sleep problems can last for a few days, weeks, or even months. For some people, sleep problems may not happen every day but a few times a week. Sleep problems may be caused by stress or a health problem. To improve your sleep, there are some simple things you can try: Teach your body that it is time to sleep. Do the same things each night before you go to bed to help you get ready for sleep. Read a book or listen to music before you fall asleep. Take a warm bath or shower to help relax you. Don't work on the computer or watch TV right before bed. The bright lights make your body think that it is time to be awake. Keep the same sleep schedule. Go to bed and get up at the same time each day, even on weekends. If you cannot fall asleep, get up and do a light activity until you feel sleepy. Try to read, write in a journal, or take deep and relaxing breaths. Create a good sleep area. Sleep in a dark and quiet room at a comfortable temperature. Use a fan or white noise machine to help block out noise. Consider ear plugs if your partner snores. Do not use your bedroom for things other than sleep or sex. Give children and pets their own separate area to sleep. Use a comfortable pillow and mattress. What you do during the day matters when you try to sleep at night. Adults and older children should avoid naps during the day. Taking a nap can make it hard to sleep at night. Avoid scary or violent TV shows, books, and computer games before bedtime. Make a list of things you need to do the next day before you go to bed. This may keep you from worrying about them. Find ways to manage stress. Learn to deep breathe and relax your muscles to help your body slow down and fall asleep. Things like yoga, meditation, or tai chi may also be helpful. Talk to a counselor about problems. This may help you to learn different ways to deal with and lower stress. Find time to get outside in the sun during the day. Avoid bright lights in the evening. Exercise each day, but not right before you go to bed. It is best to avoid exercise for 2 to 3 hours before bedtime. Encourage children to play quietly before bed.

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