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NIOSH Training for Nurses on Shift Work and Long Work Hours

Create a Good Sleep Environment (Continued)

Block out noise. Noise from traffic, jets, pets, and bed partners can disturb sleep. You can use earplugs or a machine (for example, a fan or “white noise” machine) to camouflage other noises. Train family members and pets not to enter your bedroom or make noise near the bedroom while you are sleeping. Prevent phones from disturbing your sleep. Remember to adjust your cell phone so it does not disturb you. You can customize the ‘do not disturb’ feature to allow emergency calls from selected contacts. Shut off social media and other non-essential alerts.

Keep bedroom temperature cool. You may sleep better if your bedroom is cool and you add covers to stay warm. People’s temperature preferences differ, so do what helps you feel comfortable and not too warm or too cold.

Use a comfortable mattress and pillows. You spend one third of your life in bed, and an investment in comfort can be repaid in more restful sleep. Mattresses wear out over time. If yours creaks or has lumps or a depression where you sleep, or if you wake up feeling stiff, it might be time to replace it. Similarly, pillows accumulate dust mites and lose their resilience, so replace them periodically.

Avoid watching TV, reading, or working in the bedroom. Use the bedroom only for sleep and intimacy so you condition your brain to associate the bedroom with feelings of relaxation and sleep.

Turn the clock face away so you do not repeatedly look at the time.

Module: 6, Page 3 of 20