FIGHTING AFTER-EFFECTS OF INSOMNIA?

  • Updated: December 11, 2010 - 2:45 PM

FIGHTING AFTER-EFFECTS OF INSOMNIA?

After a night of tossing and turning, the next day is exhausting -- and seemingly endless. Sleep specialists say you can feel a bit better, and improve your odds of a good sleep the next night, with these steps:

Don't hit the caffeine hard. In fact, cut off all caffeine after 2 p.m.

Be careful about driving. Lack of sleep affects reaction time and focusing ability.

Drink plenty of water. Dehydration makes you even sleepier.

Eat small, healthy meals. That way, your body won't have to put much energy into digestion.

Be smart about naps. If you really need some shut-eye, limit naps to 20 or 30 minutes and don't snooze after 4 p.m.

Do something new. A change in routine -- starting a project, for example, or trying a different exercise class -- can help you stay alert.

Stay cool. Turn down the heat, keep a window open and dress lightly. Higher temperatures make you drowsier.

Unwind at night. Take a hot bath, listen to soothing music or read. If sleep troubles continue for a week or two, talk to your primary care doctor.

NEWPORT NEWS (VA.) DAILY PRESS

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