Unit 1 Taking Charge of Your Health and Wellness Copyright Goodheart-Willcox Co., Inc. 88 If you cannot sleep, or if you wake up in the middle of the night and are unable to get back to sleep, get out of bed and do something relaxing. Feeling anxious about not sleeping makes it even harder to get to sleep. Read a book or listen to soft music until you feel tired. Avoid watching television or checking your phone or computer. These activities will keep your mind active. Create a Comfortable Sleep Environment An uncomfortable sleep environment can contribute to insomnia. It is easier to get to sleep in an environment that you find comfortable. Even if you share a bedroom with a sibling, you can take certain actions to improve the sleep environment. The following techniques will help you create a comfortable sleep environment: • Reduce the room’s temperature. Most people sleep best in a slightly cool room, with a temperature around 65°F. • Keep the bedroom dark. If light comes in through a window, install an inexpensive room-darkening shade. If you share a bedroom with a sibling, consider wearing an eye mask to create a feeling of darkness, or decide on a lights-out time (Figure 3.21). • Maintain quiet. If you cannot eliminate noise, consider wearing earplugs or sleeping with a fan or a white noise machine to mask other sounds. • Make your bed as comfortable as possible. Try to have enough room in your bed to stretch and turn comfortably. Wash your bedding, or sheets and pillowcases, at least once a week. If your mattress is uncomfortable, you might need a new one. Speak with your parent or caregiver about it. Adding a less expensive foam mattress cover may solve the problem. An inexpensive new pillow can also help. pedrolieb/Shutterstock.com Figure 3.21 Wearing a sleep mask can help you sleep when it is not dark enough in your environment. Relaxation Techniques Relaxation Techniques • Take slow, deep breaths. • Relax all of the muscles in your body, starting at your toes and working up to your head. • Think about being in a peaceful, calm place, such as a warm beach or a lush forest. • Read a book or magazine or listen to an audiobook. • Write in a journal to help your mind stop thinking about the day. • Take a warm bath or shower. • Listen to quiet music. • Perform gentle stretches or meditate to relax your body and mind. Antonio Guillem/Shutterstock.com Figure 3.20 Creating a relaxed and peaceful bedtime routine through various relaxation techniques helps prepare your brain and body for sleep. What should you do if you cannot sleep?