Foreman worker sitting and sleeping on the job

The Importance of Sleep

DF SafetyHealth and Safety Tips

There is no doubt that people feel better after a good night’s sleep. However, a restful night is not always the case for some. When deprived of this important rest, cognitive processes may become slowed, foggy and less responsive, which can create problems in the workplace. Today, let’s discuss the importance of sleep, and tips to help catch some zzz’s. 

The impact of sleep deprivation 

Lack of sleep can impact the individual, the workplace, and other workers. According to the CDC, sleep deprivation can have the following effects: 

  • Increases a person’s risk for chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and stroke. 
  • Slows physical and cognitive reaction time and accuracy, which can impact overall performance on the job, and impact safety for workers. 
  • Contribute to productivity losses as workers are less motivated, lack energy, resulting in not being able to provide the best care or labor. 

Tips for a good night’s sleep 

The Mayo Clinic reports that healthy adults should get at least seven hours of sleep each night. So, let’s discuss some strategies to consider to help you get the best rest possible: 

Create a routine 

Consistency is often key when it comes to sleep. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day and night. This will help regulate your body’s internal clock and will improve your overall sleep quality. It is also important to let your brain know when it’s time to rest. Create a routine in the evening such as reading a book, taking a bath, or having a warm cup of tea to help you wind down before your head hits the pillow. 

Ditch the technology 

While it can be tempting to mindlessly scroll before you close your eyes at night, it is best to limit your screen time before bed. At least an hour before bedtime, you should avoid using your phone, computer, or TV. The blue light from these screens can impact your sleep-wake cycle, so they are best left in another room! 

Set yourself up for success 

Your bedroom should welcome sleep. So, be sure that your bedroom is conducive to sleep. Of course, everyone will require different conditions to help them, so be sure to understand what your body and mind needs to achieve good rest. In most cases, keeping your room cool, dark, and quiet can help. Ensure your mattress and pillows are comfortable and provide the support you need to settle in for the night. 

Get moving 

Exercise also plays a significant role in combating sleep deprivation. So, be sure to get those steps in during the day to help you later at night. As a bonus, sunlight can also benefit your sleep, so soaking in those rays during the day (especially in the morning!) can also help regulate your sleep. 

Seek support 

If you have attempted different strategies, and are still suffering with sleep deprivation, it is likely time to seek professional help. Whether it be a sleep disorder, or other health issues, a medical professional can help you navigate your situation and get you on the path to better sleep. 

As employers, it is key to recognize the importance of sleep among your workers. This can be achieved by prioritizing work life balance, educating and encouraging good sleep to your workers, consider flexible working hours, and promote healthy habits in the workplace.  

Safety and sleep go hand in hand! Remember to find a routine that works for you to ensure you are getting a good night’s rest so that you can be safe and productive in the workplace.