Health Beat - Fall 2019 - 13

Get Your Zzz's
Prioritizing sleep is important for children
and adults-here's what to do
By James C. Falcon


Imagine you are a parent. It's 8 p.m. You know your children
need nine to 12 hours of sleep (the recommended guidelines
from the American Academy of Sleep Medicine for children
ages 6 to 12 years), so it's time to get the young ones to sleep.
Parents worry about how much sleep their children get all the time, but what
about their own needs? Adults often don't make sleep a priority for themselves.
"We don't make enough time," says Jutta Schmidt, RRT, RPSGT, manager of
the Trinity Sleep Center. "Make it a priority, like a healthy diet or exercise."
According to Schmidt, adults should get at least seven to nine hours of "good,
quality, uninterrupted sleep."
That word "quality" is critical. When it comes to sleep, quality is as important
as quantity.
Something that can affect both the quality and quantity of sleep? The use
of electronics-this includes television, computers, and cellphones-at nighttime, especially in bed.
"We are all so used to our electronics in the bedroom," Schmidt says.
"That interferes with our circadian rhythm." (Your circadian rhythm is the
24-hour internal clock that runs in the background of our brain and cycles
between sleepiness and alertness at regular intervals, according to the National
Sleep Foundation.)
"Photo receptors in the eyes cause alertness," Schmidt adds. "Even looking at
the phone for a minute can cause a delay."
And a delay can cause a person to stay awake. The best way to fight sleep
deprivation: Put the electronics away.
Schmidt also advises the following for quality sleep:

Abstain from
exercise a few
hours before bed

Keep your
room around
65 degrees

Sleep in a

Don't eat a
big meal
before bed

Perhaps it isn't the atmosphere that is causing poor sleep. Maybe it is something internal. That is where the Trinity Sleep Center comes in.
If you are getting the proper amount of sleep and you are still feeling tired,
you might want to consult your healthcare provider. Then, they may refer you to
the Trinity Sleep Center for further testing.
A laboratory sleep study is considered the gold standard for accurately
diagnosing sleep disorders. 1
TAKE a sleep apnea quiz at


Health Beat - Fall 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Health Beat - Fall 2019

Health Beat - Fall 2019 - 1
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