Your body needs seven to nine hours of sleep a night. Missing even one or two hours for the next few nights will leave you feeling as if you haven’t slept at all!
Sleep deprivation causes a forgetfulness, weight gain, depression and emotional outbursts. Your immune system weakens. Mistakes happen more easily. Sleep repairs cell damage and balances your body’s systems. Your brain is rejuvenated, helping you to learn and retain information more quickly.
What Being Rested Feels Like:
- A brighter mood
- More energy and alertness
- Better immunity against common infections
How You Can Feel Rested
Rest your busy brain and hardworking body. Search out a calm, quiet nap space between 1–3pm (prime nap time). A 20-minute nap is best as it rejuvenates the body and boosts memory. Learn more with ULifeline — an online resource supported by Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).
Get a Massage
Push away from your studies and slip into a state of pure relaxation. Massage resets hormone levels, increases pain-killing and feel-good endorphins, and soothes headaches and achy muscles. It also diminishes fight-or-flight responses.
- Free massages are available at the Student Recreation Center (SRC) For more information about times, dates and how to sign-up please visit Student Recreation Center (SRC) or download the mobile app for iPhone and Android.
- Give yourself a mini-massage. Concentrate on the scalp, forehead, temples, neck and should
Struggling to sleep? Walk/run at Peanut Butter & Jogging. Join a fitness class at the SRC. Studies show that 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous activity each week improves sleep quality by 65 percent. You’ll fall asleep faster. Your sleep will deepen. For maximum benefits, work out five to six hours before bedtime.
Eat Healthy Eats
Research shows that after a sleepless night, you’re hungrier than usual. Replenish your body’s fuel source with healthy options. Explore nutrition resources offered by UCR Dining Services. Grow your own food with R’Garden. Just be sure to finish heavy meals two to three hours before bedtime. Need a snack? Go for light bites (apples, bananas, nuts or jerky). Visit CAPS’ ULifeline for healthy snacking tips.
Skip the Stimulants
Caffeine, sugar, alcohol and cigarettes heighten hyperactivity and anxiety. It’s hard to quit these habit-forming stimulants, especially if you're doing it on your own. But you don't have to go it alone. Connect with a CAPS counselor about short-term appetites or long-term addictions. Use SHS's Self-Evaluator for eating disorders and alcohol use.
- View The WELL’s off-campus recovery options.
Protect Your Eyes
Sleep deprivation intensifies eye fatigue. Itchiness, burning and blurred vision can result. You can naturally replenish your eyes with a regular sleep schedule. Get eight to nine hours a day, and focus without distraction. A free nap kit from The WELL can help when a full night’s sleep is too hard to squeeze in.
Create a Nighttime Ritual
For a good night’s sleep, turn off blue lights cast by computer, TV and mobile device screens. Blue lights prevent production of melatonin, the sleep hormone. Opt for low-energy activities, such as reading a good book, taking a bath or listening to a CAPS guided meditation. For lasting results, go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. Then once awake, stay awake.
- Is a problem keeping you up at night? Talk it through with a CAPS counselor. (951) 827-5531 (UCR-TALK)
Avoid the Nightly Grind
Night bruxism — the clenching/grinding of teeth — disrupts sleep. Bruxism can be caused by stress, anxiety and sleep apnea (when breathing is disrupted during sleep). Bruxism leads to tooth damage and jaw pain. Through SHS, you can get a diagnosis and treatment plan, which could include a night guard, relaxation exercises, prescriptions, and psychotherapy or behavioral therapy.
- Talk It Out
Get Additional Help
Still can’t sleep?
- Contact a counselor at Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) by calling (951) 827-5531 (UCR-TALK)
- Make a free individual or group therapy appointment at CAPS.
- Make a Student Health Services appointment by calling (951) 827-3031
- Get physical and mental health tips with UCR's free "Just in Case" mobile app.
- Request a workshop/presentation for your student group through The Well. Choose from pre-set programming or present an idea/topic of your own.
- Join Active Mind Peer Mentors in promoting the importance of sleep across campus.
- Visit the Self-Care page for more resources.