Nurse Health: One Third of Americans Are Sleep Deprived!

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, September 8th, 2016

An alarming fact for those concerned with nurse health: One of every three Americans doesn’t get enough sleep on a regular basis, according to a new study from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

sleep deprived nurseAbout 35% of U.S. adults are sleeping less than seven hours a night, increasing their risk of a wide variety of health problems including obesity, type 2 diabetes,  high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, frequent mental distress and death, the study concluded.

Adequate sleep is as important a pillar of health as exercise and proper nutrition., yet it gets less attention. After reviewing thousands of sleep studies, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) recommends that people ages 18 to 60 sleep at least seven hours each night to promote optimal health and well-being. There seems to a cutoff point, where if you get at least seven hours, the body and brain functions at their best. Yet most people don’t get enough sleep because they don’t schedule it. It’s not prioritized.

The AASM has a list of “sleep hygiene” tips for people who want to improve their sleep. They include:

  • Go to bed at the same time each night and rise at the same time each morning.
  • Make sure the bedroom is a quiet, dark and relaxing environment, kept at a comfortable temperature.
  • Get a comfortable mattress and sheets, and use the bed only for sleeping and sex.
  • Exercise regularly and maintain a healthy diet.
  • Avoid exposure to screens or bright light prior to bedtime.
  • Don’t eat a large meal before bedtime, and avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • If you don’t fall asleep after 20 minutes, get out of bed and do something relaxing before trying again.

To learn ways to prioritize sleep and care of your mind, body and spirit, visit SelfCare for HealthCareContact me today to discuss implementing this powerful program at your facility.

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