Brand SpotlightHealthier Together


How to fight 'COVID-Somnia' and get more sleep

Posted at 11:17 AM, Aug 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-28 14:13:09-04

You've probably experienced it yourself, or have seen it in your kids - something called 'COVID-Somnia.'

A lack of sleep, too much sleep, or just being thrown off when it comes to bedtime can wreak havoc on the health of kids and adults alike.

Justin Jones, Health and Wellness Consultant with Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah says,"One of the common results of this pandemic has not only been the loss of routine in general, but certainly our sleep routine. Physicians, you know, across the country are seeing this uptick in what they're calling 'COVID-Somnia.'"

Jones says that ranges from insomnia to hypersomnia and a number of different sleep disorders. Jones says, "sleep is probably the most important thing you can do for your body, you know, along with proper nutrition and exercise."

Jones says to get adequate sleep, we need a healthy, consistent routine, beginning about an hour before bedtime. The key? You shouldn't include your TV, phone, or other electronic devices.

"I know it's a big ask, but if we can remove the TV, if we can remove the devices from our room. There's some research out there on blue light, and that's the light from our devices, that blue light or that bright light can really help us in the morning to get us up and alert, but at night it's the exact opposite of what we want," says Jones.

Jones says if you are experiencing insomnia exercise can help, along with watching your alcohol and caffeine consumption.

"If we develop a proper routine, if we get some exercise, if we just really be careful around caffeine and alcohol, it will put us in some good habits," says Jones.

When it comes to how much sleep we need, that varies by age. The American Academy of Pediatrics advises preschoolers get 10-13 hours a day, school aged kids 9-10 hours and teens 8-10 hours. And for the rest of us? "Seven to nine hours is really what we`re looking for.

If you're having some sleep issues, or you feel like you're kind of getting on the verge of that, I highly encourage you to talk to your physician about that," says Jones.