Sleep and Involvement

According to a study by Maurice Ohayon, MD, PhD, of Stanford University, students who are involved in extracurricular activities are more likely to have sleep deprivations and be sleepy during the daytime, which can negatively affect their academic performance. If you are one of the many students who is part of a student organization, is doing an internship, working on campus or is a student athlete this isn’t surprising information. So what can be done?

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) offers the following tips on how to get a good night’s sleep:

  • Follow a consistent bedtime routine.
  • Establish a relaxing setting at bedtime.
  • Get a full night’s sleep every night.
  • Avoid foods or drinks that contain caffeine, as well as any medicine that has a stimulant, prior to bedtime.
  • Do not stay up all hours of the night to “cram” for an exam, do homework, etc. If your activities are proving to be too time-consuming, consider cutting back on these activities.
  • Keep computers and TVs out of the bedroom.
  • Do not go to bed hungry, but don’t eat a big meal before bedtime either.
  • Avoid any rigorous exercise within six hours of your bedtime.
  • Make your bedroom quiet, dark and a little bit cool.
  • Get up at the same time every morning.

These recommendations can be hard to follow if you need to work to pay for school, are required to do an internship for your major or are part of an organization that encourages networking and has mentoring opportunities. Take some time to consider the necessity of your activities in contrast to your desire to be involved. Check out for more great information.