A good night’s sleep can help students perform better academically, manage their stress, and improve their physical health. Read below for more information on sleep benefits, as well as tips and tricks for good sleep.
Sleep FAQs Accordion Closed
Why is sleep important?
Sleep helps with memory encoding and helps regulate many biological systems, including the desire to eat. College students who regularly get 7-9 hours of sleep tend to have higher GPA’s!
How many hours of sleep should college students get per night?
At least 8 hours! However, if you’re an athlete you should be getting around 10 hours. If you find yourself sleeping 11 or more hours a night, every night, and still find yourself tired in the morning talk with your healthcare provider.
What is the ideal amount of time for a nap?
20-30 minutes max. If you nap longer than that your body can slip into REM (rapid eye movement) cycle and you making you groggier than before. It’s best to avoid naps if possible.
Do computers and cell phones affect your sleep?
Yes. Bright lights can confuse your body into thinking it’s still daytime and activate your brain, making it hard to fall asleep. Artificial blue light (on computers and phones) causes the most disruption.
Does going to bed at different times every night affect your sleep?
Yes! It can be harder to fall asleep if you’re going to bed at different times. Having a regular sleep schedule is ideal for supporting your natural circadian rhythm.
What is an Ideal sleeping environment?
A cool, dark, tidy, quiet space supports good sleep. Cleaning up your room and talking to your roommate about an agreed upon “quiet hour” can be very helpful.
What happens when you oversleep/don’t sleep enough?
It can increase your risk of diabetes, increase your appetite, and lead to headaches, back pain, and depression. Not getting enough sleep can also make it more difficult to manage stress.
Sleep Hygiene Tips Accordion Closed
- Exercise regularly: aim for 30 minutes of moderate activity, 5x/week; avoid exercising right before bed
- Limit naps: try to get the majority of your sleep during the night
- Do things that relax you: try drawing, meditation, yoga or drinking caffeine-free tea
- Keep a “worry journal”: write down your worries or to do list before trying to go to sleep
- Avoid excessive caffeine, alcohol, marijuana and nicotine: all of these disrupt the sleep cycle
- Avoid “screen time” one hour before going to bed: close down that laptop and set your phone aside
- Establish a regular sleep and wake time: talk with your roommates about this too to make sure everyone is on the same page
- Create a comfortable sleep environment: buy comfortable bedding and a fan to have a relaxing, cool area
Online Resources Accordion Closed
- WebMD Sleep Assessment: Take this brief, online assessment and receive personalized feedback to help improve your sleep
- Set To Go: Improving Your Quality of Sleep
Sleep Hygiene Apps Accordion Closed
- Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock: This alarm clock uses the sleep cycle theory and monitors your sleep habits. You set a window of time to wake up and it goes off at the optimal point in your cycle, helping you wake up feel refreshed
- Sleep Time: Another alarm clock-type app that uses an algorithm to find the ideal time to wake you up within your selected window to reduce grogginess
- Pzizz: Pzizz offers are variety of different sounds that can help you calm down after a busy day. Your brain will start to associate these sounds with sleep, helping you prepare for a restful night
- iOS (iPhone) Bedtime Feature: Set a bedtime reminder, alarm, and choose soothing sounds to wake up to. This feature can help you stay on a sleep schedule to assure a full-nights rest throughout the week
- Sleepo (Android only): From white noise to nature sounds, with this app you can customize music that can help you relax and quiet a full mind before bed
- Relax & Sleep Well: While hypnosis may not interest everyone, some individuals use self-hypnosis to help with insomnia. This app will not put you in a trance; instead, it will guide you into a deep state of relaxation though melodies and voice-led hypnosis
- Headspace and Insight Timer: These meditation apps can help you practice mindfulness throughout the day, which leads to better sleep at night. Try the sleep-focused meditations before bed for better quality sleep!
- Relax Melodies: Unwind and prepare for sleep by listening to different guided meditations, brainwave beats, and soothing melodies – the combinations are endless.