When I had to choose a “health problem” to do a presentation on in high school, I chose Sleep Deprivation as my topic. In middle school and high school, I struggled almost every night with falling asleep, and during the school year I would battle with my Mom about getting out of bed on time almost every morning.
But in college, I somehow stumbled on a midnight to 8 am sleep schedule that worked amazingly. I could fall asleep almost every night and frequently woke up right before my alarm. I was notorious for the regularity of my sleep schedule, which my friends called “Zook Time.”
But going to grad school really jacked up my sleep schedule. There were a few months in there were I really didn’t sleep more than 2-4 hours a night, and it wasn’t because I didn’t try! Now that I’ve finished grad school, I’m trying to regain my formerly excellent healthy sleeping powers.
I stumbled across this great article on tips for how to get kids to sleep more (or how to help yourself sleep more) by Ashley Merryman. What surprised me most of all in the article was learning that as many as 25% of people with ADHD have an underlying sleep disorder, and that addressing the sleep disorder would make their ADHD completely disappear.
I can attest that these tips work. I’ve been turning down the temperature in my apartment before going to bed. I’ve also been using low light before bedtime and not using the computer for two hours before bed. I started using the stove hood light in my kitchen instead of the overhead track lighting, a little table lamp in my living area instead of three big floor lamps, and my bedside lamp instead of my overhead light. I even put a little lamp in my bathroom so I can have low light when I brush my teeth before bed!
I know that many students struggle with sleep and wakefulness, so I’m excited to pass these tips on to everyone.