The advice of experts when you are sleep deprived is to change behaviors and thoughts that interfere with sleep, for example, do not go to bed when you are not sleepy, do not sleep “baked”.
Covid-19 causes a lot of stress and disturbance in life, which more or less affects circadian rhythm and sleep. According to an analysis of 44 studies from 13 countries published in February in the Journal of Sleep Medicine, it is estimated that 40% of these countries’ populations have problems with sleeping during an epidemic.
“Our brains have to feel safe and secure in order to go to sleep,” says Wendy Troxel, a psychologist, sleep behavior expert and team-based behavior and social scientist. research officer Rand Corp, says.
Everyone knows it’s important to have good sleep habits. For a good night’s sleep, going to bed on time, avoiding alcohol, caffeine, and bright lights are essential. However, according to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, these measures are not enough to treat chronic insomnia. Research published in February in the Journal of Sleep Medicine proposes a range of treatments collectively known as cognitive and behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I).
Unlike common sleep problems, insomnia is a type of sleep disorder. People with this disease often have difficulty sleeping more than 3 times a week. It can last a month or longer, causing fatigue, mood swings, and distraction. Experts say that the feeling of anxiety and fear when not being able to sleep contributes to insomnia.
Ironically, it is the measures aimed at dealing with insomnia that aggravate this phenomenon. Increasing sleep time by waking up late, taking a nap, or going to bed too early can all reduce sleepiness. You will find it harder to sleep when you should be resting. In addition, it’s easy to fall into a vicious cycle: The more time you spend in bed, the harder it is for you to fall asleep and become depressed. Over time, the brain associates negative emotions with the bed.
“If you spend a lot of time in bed worrying, frustration, and suffering from not being able to sleep,” said Philip Cheng, psychologist and sleep researcher at the Henry Ford Center for Sleep Disorders and Research. , the brain considers the bed to be the place to vent all these emotions. ”
CBT-I addresses that by helping you change the behaviors and thoughts that interfere with sleep. The method not only dispels your problem, but also has long-term benefits. A 2020 study by Dr Cheng and colleagues found that compared with people who were not treated with CBT-I, those who had undergone this therapy years earlier slept better and were in better spirits during a pandemic. .
A fundamental part of the CBT-I is limiting the amount of time you spend awake in bed. We should not get into bed unless we are sleepy. If you have trouble sleeping, sit in another room, turn down the lights and do something relaxing, like reading, solving puzzles, listening to soothing music, but not keeping your eyes on the screen.
You need to wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends. This will regulate your circadian rhythm, helping you to quit sleeping habits that can make it difficult to fall asleep at night. Based on estimates of how many hours you actually sleep and how long you should wake up, you can work out what time you should go to bed. Once your routine is in place, slowly extend the amount of time you sleep.
In addition, you need to change your mindset. Tormenting yourself for not being able to sleep only adds pressure and interferes with your sleep. Here are some tips you can refer to for a better night’s sleep.
* Create good sleep habits.
You should go to bed and wake up on time, keep the room cool, quiet and dark. Remember that the bed is a place just for sleeping or having sex. Avoid alcohol, caffeine, exercise, and avoid looking at the phone or computer screen for 30-60 minutes before going to bed.
* Not trying to sleep.
Going to bed early, sleeping for a long time or taking a few naps just reduces the urge to sleep, making it difficult to fall asleep at night.
* Do not lie in bed if it is difficult to sleep.
Lying to bed in bed causes your brain to automatically see the bed as a place for you to express your negative emotions.
* Adjust daily routine.
You should eat and exercise on time (don’t work out late). At the end of the day, stop working to relax and walk.
* Respect your own circadian rhythm.
Changing your habits is not easy whether you are a “night owl” or a “rooster”. Determine when you find it easiest to fall asleep and stick to it.
* Preparation steps before going to bed.
Create bedtime habits to let your body know it’s time to relax, through activities like bathing, reading, and relaxing.
* Stop panicking.
Don’t whine yourself that you won’t be able to sleep, you won’t be awake the next day. Instead, think positively and focus on something else. Losing sleep one night does not mean the end of the world, right? “Good sleepers don’t think much about sleep,” says Wendy Troxel, an expert in sleep behavior.
* Show gratitude.
When you have trouble sleeping, think about the things you are grateful for or your favorite moments of the day, so your brain will connect the bed with pleasant thoughts. Allison Harvey, professor of psychology at the University of California, Berkeley and director of the Golden Bear Sleep and Mood Research Clinic, says this helps create a sense of security.
* Hear someone’s voice.
Easy and light audiobooks are the ideal choice. Keep the volume low when you go to sleep. This way helps you relax, get rid of the thoughts that go around in your head.