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We humans are creatures of habit.
“I probably watch a little TV,” says Renae Worrell.
From the time we get up until we go to bed. But it’s our evening routines that may be keeping us up at night.
“I read in bed also,” says Worrell.
“If we’re bringing in things that we do during the daytime, such as the television in the bed or doing your homework in bed, texting in bed, Facebooking in bed, then you can’t flip your switch,” says Dr. Jose Colon, sleep specialist with Lee Memorial Health System.
So we may be our own worst enemy, creating sleep pitfalls that trap us into insomnia. Getting a healthy night’s rest takes the proper mindset.
“There are things that relax us and help make a sleep transition,” says Dr. Colon.
The most important is to turn off the noise. Music is another one of those ‘daytime activities’ that actually fuel and engage us.
“Things that can be helpful is like a white noise, the sound of a fan, or the sound of an mp3 player with an ocean or a rain forest, crickets chirping, something that we specifically associate with soothing and with sleep,” says Dr. Colon.
And we’ve all suffered from this sleep pitfall, worrying about getting enough sleep.
“There’s something called psycho-physiologic insomnia and what that means is that some people have difficulty sleeping because something is bothering them. What’s bothering them is that they have difficulty sleeping,” says Dr. Colon.
Worrell admits taking occasional sleeping aids to quash the clutter in her head.
“To get quite and eliminate activity and thoughts and just get quiet,” says Worrell.
What often ends up happening, we steal a nap during the day. That decision to take a break and shutdown may cost you later.
“So when nighttime comes, your body process is not aligned,” says Dr. Colon.
It’s best to get keep your daytime activities where they belong. And give them a rest at night.