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Are you getting enough sleep?

Woman Sleeping with clock in Foreground-g00436c72e_640March is National Sleep Awareness Month.

Many Americans aren’t getting enough bright light exposure during the day and are looking at screens around bedtime, according to the National Sleep Foundation. In addition, many fall short of recommendations for exercise and take meals at inconsistent times.

These are among the findings of the foundation’s 2022 Sleep in America Poll.

Details from the poll are:

  • Nearly half of Americans say they aren’t exposed to the recommended levels of bright light when indoors in the morning and afternoon.
  • More than a third of Americans fall short of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations for moderate or vigorous activity, another key factor in ensuring a sound sleep.
  • Four in 10 Americans eat meals at inconsistent times, making it more difficult for their bodies to regulate the sleep/wake process.
  • More than half of Americans indulge in screen time within an hour before bed or even while in bed.

These findings show there are opportunities for small adjustments to daily routines that prioritize sleep for overall health, said John Lopos, CEO of the foundation.

Over the last 31 years, the foundation has conducted the poll to gain a better understanding of Americans’ sleep health and habits, Lopos said. It shares sleep practices so people can operate at their best.

Tips include:

  • Increase exposure to bright light when waking and throughout the afternoon.
  • Help regulate your body’s sleep/wake process by eating meals at consistent times during the day and avoiding heavy meals two to three hours before bedtime.
  • Avoid screen time at least one hour before bedtime.
  • Make your bedroom a sleep friendly space by keeping it cool, dark, and quiet.
  • Follow recommended guidelines on exercise to improve overall health and your sleep. Aim for at least 20 minutes of exercise a day.
  • Get the recommended hours of sleep per night. The foundation recommends seven to nine hours for most adults.

Here’s wishing you many good nights of sleep.

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