As the quarter moves past midterms and revs up into finals, it is easy to find yourself trying to increase study hours through late nights and cans of energy drinks. During these stressful times, it can be hard to remember that sleep is a priority.
Exactly how much sleep do you need? The National Sleep Foundation says between 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night. However, even if you are getting in those hours, sleep debt (time that is accumulated due to waking up, bad habits, or sickness) can cause you to still remain feeling tired. The good news is that sleep debt can be made up, unlike most of your tests. By getting more sleep through naps or by going to bed an hour earlier, you can slowly catch up on the hours you have missed.
For myself, I have found that using cell phone apps are a great way of keeping track of my sleeping habits. I have an Android phone and use the Sleep Bot Tracker Log to record how many hours of sleep I get each night, and how much sleep debt I have accumulated over the last 10 days. For iPhone users, there are plenty of sleep apps out there, but not all will track sleep debt. Make sure to try out a few. If you’re not a smart phone user, a simple sleep journal where you write down what time you go to bed and when you wake up can be an effective tool to helping you sleep better. Plus, you can add notes about what was keeping you up!
For more information visit: http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/how-sleep-works/how-much-sleep-do-we-really-need