Bad Sleep Practices
- Avoid napping during the daytime. If you absolutely have to have a nap, try to do so at the same time every day. Make sure not to nap for more than one hour. Mid-afternoon (no later than 3:00pm) is best for most people.
- While a light snack before bedtime can help promote sound sleep, avoid large meals.
- Avoid ingestion of caffeine within six hours of bedtime.
- Don't drink alcohol when sleepy. Even a small dose of alcohol can have a potent adverse effect when combined with tiredness.
- Avoid the use of nicotine close to bedtime or during the night. Nicotine is a stimulant and may adversely affect your sleep.
- Sleeping pills should only be used conservatively. Most doctors avoid prescribing sleeping pills for periods longer than three weeks. Sleeping pills may lose their effectiveness if overused or abused. Also, overuse or abuse of sleeping pills is dangerous and can become addictive.
- Do not take alcohol while taking sleeping pills or other medications. Alcohol combined with medications can produce undesirable effects.
- Try to avoid sleeping pills if you have been diagnosed with Obstructive Sleep Apnea Syndrome. Sleeping pills may worsen your OSAS.
- Do not use alcohol to help you fall asleep at night. Alcohol disturbs your sleep after the first few hours and will worsen OSAS and some other sleep disorders.