Mar 17, 2015 2:00 PM

Author: Office of Public Affairs

When is the last time you got eight hours of uninterrupted sleep and woke up feeling rested and ready to take on the day? It’s probably been awhile, according to Bryce Williams, DDS, an oral and maxillofacial surgeon at University of Utah Health Care. “There are millions of people who have trouble sleeping and they don’t know why,” he says. “This is because 80% of moderate to severe cases of sleep apnea go undiagnosed.”

Here are some ways to improve your sleep: 

Track your sleep 

Keep a sleep diary and note your sleep patterns and daytime moods. Discuss the results with your doctor. 

Watch what you consume before bed.

Going to bed stuffed or hungry may affect your sleep. Alcohol, caffeine, nicotine, and high-protein meals can also keep you up. A light, carbohydrate-rich snack (e.g., crackers, toast) before bed can help increase tryptophan levels, which induce sleep.

Make your room conducive to sleep.

Room temperature can affect your sleep. “Keep your room dark, around 70 degrees, and free of distractions,” Williams says. If you tend to wake up because of noise, consider running a fan or using a white noise app to drown out the sounds.  

If you’re still having trouble getting a good night’s rest, schedule an appointment at University of Utah Health’s Sleep | Wake Center by calling 801-581-3067. Bring the sleep tracker along with you to discuss the results with your doctor. 

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