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Sleep advice from Center for Sleep Kempenhaeghe

So-called "sleep hygiene advice" is useful for everyone and can be a first step toward better sleep in cases of insomnia. These are relatively simple pieces of advice that will have an initial effect if applied consistently.

The experts from Center for Sleep Kempenhaeghe put the advice below on this clear poster of sleep and wake tips.


Sleep hygiene advice:

Keep regular bedtimes. Get up at the same time every (work) day, up to two hours later at the weekend.

Limit time in bed to no more than eight hours.

Keep the bed for sleeping or making love.

Do not go to bed until you feel sleepy. Get up if you cannot sleep within half an hour. Do something elsewhere that relaxes you. Then go back to bed. Repeat the procedure if you again cannot fall asleep.

Limit reading or watching television in bed to no more than half an hour.

Relax before bedtime. Avoid strenuous mental and physical activities for about an hour before bedtime.

Avoid exposure to "blue light" and/or screen use the last hour before bed.

If thoughts keep you awake, reserve a "mulling hour" during the day.

Do not take a nap in the evening. A nap during the day (maximum half an hour) is not a problem if it does not worsen your night sleep.

Flip the alarm clock. Constantly seeing the time only causes agitation.

Avoid caffeine and nicotine after 6 p.m. (coffee, tea, cola, chocolate, smoking).

Do not use alcohol as a nightcap.

Provide physical activity during the day.


Author: Sleep experts Kempenheaghe
Editor: Guus Peters