I try to get at least eight hours of sleep a night, but I’m not always successful. What can I say? Sometimes, it’s too hard to resist binge-watching a show on Netflix. But how does sleep deprivation actually affect us?
On average, Americans get seven-and-a-half hours of sleep each night, which isn’t too bad. On workdays, most people are in bed before 11 p.m. and awake by 6:38 a.m.
There is some bad news: A staggering 50 to 70 million Americans suffer from some type of sleep disorder, and only 18 percent of people describe their sleep quality as “very good.”
If you’re using your lunch break for a quick snooze, you aren’t alone: More than half of Americans have taken a nap in the last week.
Let’s talk side effects. Less than six hours of sleep a night can lead to increased risks of high blood pressure, hypertension and depression. It’s also much harder to stay alert and vigilant when running on little sleep.
So how do you improve your sleeping habits? Avoid large meals, alcohol and caffeine before you fall asleep. Make sure your bedroom is quiet, dark and cool, and create a relaxing routine to help you wind down.
Click here for even more strategies to help you get to sleep and wake up well-rested.