The Reason Why You Can’t Sleep During Finals Season

can't sleep during finals

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  • It’s every college student’s most dreaded time of the year: Finals season.

    While vacation is so close you can practically taste it, a bunch of final projects and tests stand between you and that wonderful break from school.

    Finals season is super busy, and you’re probably coping by drinking plenty of coffee, cramming for your upcoming tests, and maybe even pulling some all-nighters.

    When you do find time to sleep, it might be difficult to get a restful sleep, and you may find yourself tossing and turning and struggling to actually relax. There’s a reason for that, and luckily you can do some things to change it and get the quality sleep you need.

    Prioritize Getting Enough Sleep

    It may seem counter-intuitive to make sleep a top priority when you have so much to do during finals season, but getting enough sleep is more important now than ever. Sleep deprivation in college students causes all sorts of issues that can result in a negative academic performance, which is exactly what you’re trying to prevent with your cramming and last-minute work.

    When you don’t get enough sleep, your brain becomes more forgetful, so you’re less likely to recall the information you were studying the night before. Plus, sleep specialists have found that students who get less than six hours of sleep each night perform poorly in their academics.

    Getting enough sleep is also important to your health and is a great way to prevent potential health issues. If you don’t get enough sleep, you may be jeopardizing both the strength of your immune system and increasing your chances of getting sick. The last thing you need is to be sick during finals season, but sleep deprivation can potentially have that result.

    Just as you’re working to meet deadlines and get ready for finals, make getting enough sleep a priority during finals season. Schedule a bedtime and then schedule your studying so that you can meet that bedtime. Try to get your roommates on the same schedule so that you can all go to bed at the same time and sleep undisturbed.

    Set Up Your Dorm Room for Sleeping

    The lights that you’re exposed to during the day and evening could be affecting your sleep. The rumor that LED lights are too blue to allow you to sleep well is a myth, but other device’s blue light could keep you from getting a quality night’s rest.

    Devices like your phone, laptop, and TV emit blue light, and a study conducted by the University of Houston College of Optometry found that this type of blue light can interfere with how brains release melatonin, which aids in sleep. If you’re lying in bed and using your phone or laptop, the blue light tells your brain that it’s time to get up, making it difficult for your body to go to sleep when it’s time for bed.

    To prevent this from being an issue, read a book before bed instead of using your phone or laptop. You can also purchase blue-light-blocking glasses so that you can use these devices without the blue light disrupting your sleep.

    To further make dorm living more bearable and increase the quality of your sleep, purchase a quality memory foam mattress that will make your bed more comfortable. You might also want to invest in a sound machine to mask the background noise of dorm living and help you fall asleep.

    Use a Sleep Aid — Carefully!

    Sleep aids can help you to fall asleep and stay asleep, but most of them leave you feeling tired and groggy the next morning, which isn’t a great option when you’re in college and need to be awake and alert. Instead of using an over-the-counter sleep aid, consider using CBD.

    CBD isn’t clinically proven to help people fall asleep, but there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence that CBD does help people to relax and sleep. As an added perk, CBD oil is known to help reduce anxiety, which is a benefit during finals season.

    other valuable tips:

    See a Doctor

    If you make the above lifestyle changes and still can’t fall asleep or stay asleep, it’s time to see a doctor. Sleep disorders like insomnia, sleep apnea, and restless leg syndrome, affect between 50 and 70 million Americans, so a sleep disorder could be behind your sleep difficulties. The good news is that many of these sleep disorders can be managed with lifestyle changes, medications, therapies, and devices like mouth guards.

    If you think that you may have a sleep disorder, visit your primary care physician or your campus health center. A doctor will probably refer you to a sleep specialist who can help to get to the bottom of the issue and start you on a treatment plan.

    Getting enough sleep is important to your college experience, and it’s even more important when you’re under pressure to perform well during finals week. When you’re well-rested you’re more likely to put in a top academic performance, plus you’ll be better able to enjoy your college experience when you’re not tired all the time. If you’re worried about finals season, one of the best things that you can do is make sure that you get enough rest every night.

    Image Credit: can’t sleep during finals by Pixabay

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