Prioritize Your Sleep! Here’s Why It Matters

Discover the many health conditions linked with poor sleep, along with simple sets that can help you get better rest.

Jam-packed schedules, along with an endless list of TV to binge, can make it easy to deprioritize sleep. But getting a good night’s rest is important for nearly every aspect of your health, from your heart to your skin to your mood to your weight.

Find out more about why getting enough shut-eye matters, and simple steps you can take to ensure you get a good night’s rest.

What Happens When You Don’t Get Enough Sleep 

First things first: When it comes to sleep, both quantity and quality matter. Aim to get at least 7 hours a night, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Habits like scrolling on your phone or bringing pets to bed can reduce the quality of your sleep, which means you won’t get the full benefits of your shut-eye.

According to the CDC, not getting enough sleep is linked with:

  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Obesity
  • Depression

Plus, you won’t feel good if you’re not well-rested. You may find yourself making silly errors or feeling irritable. And you may find yourself snacking more, too. Get more insights into how sleep affects your health.

How to Clock Better Shut-Eye 

Fortunately, the strategies you’ll need to put in place to get a good night’s rest aren’t very complicated — but you will need to be consistent and stick with these habits.

Here are the top recommendations from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine:

  1. Always get up at the same time — yes, that means you shouldn’t sleep in on days off.
  2. Go to sleep when you’re sleepy, and make sure you’ll be able to get at least 7 hours of sleep before your alarm goes off.
  3. Keep phones, TV and other electronics out of your bedroom. Your bed should be a place for sleep and sex.
  4. Create a relaxing bedtime routine. You might want to have a nightly bath, journal for a bit or read a book. And, make sure your bedroom is comfy, dark and not too hot.
  5. Limit electronics and lights — turn off bright lights and electronics 30 minutes before bed.
  6. Be smart with your diet and beverages — don’t have caffeine in the afternoon or evening, and skip a nightcap. A healthy diet (and exercise) helps with sleep.

Discover more strategies that can help improve your sleep.