Sleep Better, Even During this Crazy Year

Sep 21, 2020 | Past Sponsored

Mala Lacaze, clinical coordinator of Clark Memorial Health’s Sleep Center.
If you’ve found it hard to sleep in the chaos of 2020, it’s likely a normal response, says Mala Lacaze, clinical coordinator of Clark Memorial Health’s Sleep Center.

“Whenever we experience significant or long-term emotional stress in our daily lives, this is going to impact our sleep,” she says. “Some of us will experience insomnia, often for the first time. We can have difficulty turning off the racing thoughts that creep in the moment we close our eyes. It’s important to remember this is normal and usually only temporary.

“We may also find ourselves sleeping even more than usual. This can be a sign of depression that a lot of us are feeling with the changes to our lives. It’s important that we continue with an active lifestyle while maintaining social distancing. We need to continue to reach out to friends and loved ones to avoid feeling isolated.”

For some patients, a sleep study can reveal what’s disturbing their sleep. Patients can come to Clark’s sleep lab, which is currently open using extra safety protocols, or even pick up a home sleep study that can be returned to be scored by the Sleep Center team. “It’s painless and gives us a clear picture of what’s going on,” Mala says.

Good sleep is life-changing for patients, she adds. “Most of the time patients may not even realize how exhausted they are until they get a good night’s sleep. They’re not aware of how many other aspects of their life are affected.”

Mala’s tips for a better night’s sleep tonight:

  • Try to maintain a consistent bedtime and awake time, even though your daily routine may have changed.
  • Avoid napping during the day, even after a poor night’s sleep.
  • Make your bedroom a dark and quiet place used only for sleep; no television or computers allowed.
  • Silence your cell phone.
  • Avoid caffeine and exercise close to bedtime.

Learn more about Clark’s Sleep Center here.


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