Sleep Hygiene – How to Get a Good Night's Sleep

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke recommends the following tips for getting a good night's sleep and managing various sleep disorders.

Man Sleeping Image - Masterfile

  • Set a schedule. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on the weekends.
  • Exercise daily, but not at night before you go to sleep.
  • Avoid caffeine, cigarettes, and alcohol, all of which can deprive a person of sleep or interfere with particular stages of the sleep cycle.
  • Establish a relaxing bedtime ritual that you do every night before you go to bed, whether it is taking a hot bath or reading a book.
  • Try to wake up to the sun and expose yourself to the early sunshine, not necessarily by going outside, but by opening curtains or shades and letting the sun come into your home. The sun helps trigger and reset your biological clock, the part of your brain that tells you when you are sleepy and when it is time to wake up.
  • Make sure that the room where you sleep is not too hot or too cold.

Publication Review By: Stanley J. Swierzewski, III, M.D.

Published: 01 Jan 2000

Last Modified: 06 Oct 2015