What Is Sleep Hygiene And Why Is It Important?

Per Wilmington Health, sleep hygiene includes various healthy practices that can help improve your sleep quality and make you more alert and productive during the day. According to a 2014 study published in Sleep Medicine Reviews, concern over the need to understand proper sleep hygiene habits has increased over the years. This may be due to the general public's poor sleep quality and the prevalence of sleep deprivation. The study explains that sleep hygiene doesn't necessarily focus on the bedroom environment, but also the general lifestyle, such as diet, physical activity, and stress management.

The Sleep Doctor shares that following proper sleep hygiene is imperative for youngsters and adults. It's even more critical for those who work night shifts or have hectic schedules, as they are more prone to sleep-related problems. Moreover, not following sleep hygiene may put you at a higher risk of diseases like heart conditions, hypertension, diabetes, kidney disease, obesity, or mental health problems.

Some must-try sleep hygiene practices

According to the Sleep Foundation, one of the most important things for sleep hygiene is sticking to a sleep pattern or schedule. Having a daily bedtime and wake-up routine helps your body adjust the circadian rhythm and ensures you get sufficient night's rest. Make sure you go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. If you miss a few hours of sleep, it's better to take a short nap (no later than early afternoon) to cover the loss instead of compensating with a longer sleep time, suggests Sleep Foundation.

In addition, it's important to keep your bedroom environment ideal for a good night's sleep. WebMD recommends keeping your bedroom dark and cool to fall asleep faster and more soundly. Many sleep experts suggest keeping the bedroom temperature between 60 to 67 degrees F. Moreover, WebMD states that the bedroom should be free of clutter and unnecessary items.

They also advise keeping electronic devices such as TV out of the bedroom as they can heavily interfere with the sleep cycle. Similarly, it is also important to choose the right mattress and bedding that gives you comfort (via Casper).