ARE YOUR EMPLOYEES GETTING ENOUGH SLEEP?
The Importance of Effective Sleep
Sleep is key for a healthy life. How much we need varies with each individual. Most people require between 6 and 8 hours of sleep each night. Sleep happens in cycles, these usually move from light sleep to deep sleep, back to light, then into REM (Rapid Eye Movement), as well as being awake. Sometimes the stage of being awake during the night is a very short period that you may not even be able to remember. Each stage is important and impacts mood, mental and physical restoration, aspects of memory and learning.
How Sleep Impacts Health, Happiness, and Productivity
Employees who are sleep-deprived can be less productive than others and may take longer to complete tasks or tackle projects. This can also lead to an increase in absence from work, difficulty concentrating on important projects and a decrease in performance if employees have not slept well. Especially in the current climate, during the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important for employees to maintain good sleeping habits, getting a good night’s rest to feel energised in the morning whilst most are working remotely. A healthy work-life balance should be maintained to ensure that each employee is more productive throughout the working day.
The benefits of having a good night’s rest are that it will improve work performance, generally makes staff more relaxed, happier, and more engaged, and reduce the levels of anxiety or stress. Sleeping well improves both their mental and physical wellbeing.
There are some steps that employers can encourage their employees to maintain to ensure adequate rest. Create awareness about the importance of sleep and encourage your employees to sleep better by ensuring that they are not overworked. Ensure employees are supported to ‘down tools' at the end of their working day, and more specifically whilst working remotely. Encourage employees to use their annual leave to recharge.
Employees who are made aware of the importance of sleep will be equipped to review their own sleeping habits and the impact it has on their work and home life. This can also be beneficial for others and give an insight into colleagues who may be struggling and inspire employees to work smarter not harder.
Tips and Tricks:
Wind down and clear your mind
A good night routine can help you to fall asleep faster and sleep better at night. Avoid scrolling through your phone close to bedtime as blue light interferes with your body's ability to prepare for sleep because it blocks the melatonin in your body. Especially for light-sleepers, sound therapy can help lull you to sleep, for example a white noise machine or listening to soothing sounds. Apps such as Sleep Sounds or Calm also provide excellent meditation and white noise options.
Try out Homeopathic Treatments
This is the use of a more holistic approach, using essential oils to help calm your system. Using these oils is more effective through a diffuser in your bedroom 15 minutes prior to bedtime.
Create a peaceful bedroom environment – Keeping your bedroom dark, cool and quiet can contribute to a better night’s sleep. Try using an eye mask or blackout curtains, dim the night light and turn digital devices and mobiles the other way away from your line of sight. This will help support the melatonin production in your system to improve sleep.
Follow a Balanced Diet
Avoid big meals at night, and cut back on carbohydrate-rich and sugary foods. Also, reduce your alcohol and caffeine intake, and avoid too many liquids late at night. Cutting down on nicotine intake is also highly recommended.
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Take a Relaxing Shower or Bath
A popular way to destress after a long day at work is by taking a relaxing shower or bath, this can help to fall asleep faster and improve the quality of rest.
Exercise During the Day
This is the best natural sleep remedy. However, make sure to exercise early in the day. It can be a stimulant that could keep you awake if undertaken too close to your bedtime.
Encourage your staff to improve their sleep patterns themselves. If you notice a colleague is struggling, help by pointing them in the right direction.
If your employees are struggling with their sleep pattern, it can help to speak with a Doctor. We can provide same day appointments and offer easy online booking.