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Get better sleep: managing sleep in real life
Get better sleep: managing sleep in real life

Additional tips for managing sleep to improve alertness (while considering your family and social commitments)

Robert Higdon avatar
Written by Robert Higdon
Updated over a week ago

Talk to family or roommates 

If you live with others, you’ll need their help to get the sleep you need. This is especially true if your schedule differs a lot from theirs. Some suggestions:

  • share your work schedule and talk to them about times it’s important for you to sleep

  • establish guidelines for when it’s ok to wake you

  • if you can, plan family or social activities around your sleep schedule



If you work at night, naps can be beneficial. Try sleeping as long as 90 minutes prior to starting a night shift. But, give yourself at least an hour after waking to overcome any short-term grogginess.

If working daytime hours, naps can sometimes have the wrong effect by causing short-term drowsiness and making it harder to fall asleep later in the day. For best results, take a nap between 1 and 3pm, and restrict it to no more than 30 minutes.



While it can help you fall asleep quicker, it affects the quality of your sleep. A drink with dinner is fine, but avoid alcohol at least three hours before bed.



Staying hydrated is important everyday, but drinking too much before bed can interrupt sleep.



Good quality proteins (chicken breast, lean meats) may help improve sleep quality, whereas diets high in junk food or poor quality fats could reduce the quality of your sleep. Try a healthy, balanced diet to see if your sleep improves.

If you’re doing everything right and still struggling to get enough sleep, that’s often a good cue to talk to a doctor or health staff.

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