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Good sleeping habits

It’s important to establish a good routine and habits around sleeping and bedtime. In this article, we highlight helpful techniques to improve sleep.

Watch Dr Faith Orchard explain some of the processes involved in sleep, and how these can be affected when we’re feeling low.

Sleep is hugely important for both our physical and mental health, and teenagers in particular are vulnerable to sleeping difficulties, due to changes in their biology. During these times of social distancing and social isolation, you may have found your sleep habits have changed or become even more challenging.

Sleep tips

It’s important to establish a good routine and habits around sleeping and bedtime. As much as possible, go to sleep, wake up and get out of bed at the same times each day. It’s tempting to sleep in for much longer or stay up much later when we don’t need to go to school or be at other places. However, this will play havoc with your biological clock and can eventually make it much more difficult to get good sleep.

Another tip is to make sure your bedroom is associated with sleeping and not with being awake and active.

This might be difficult at the moment if you’re restricted to being at home, where you might be living closely with a number of family members. If you’re able to spend time in other parts of the house, try and treat your bedroom as an important sleep environment. If this isn’t possible, set up a comfy beanbag or blanket in your bedroom to help you avoid doing all of your activities in bed. We’ve highlighted a range of other helpful techniques that can improve sleep below.

This article draws on material from our Understanding Depression and Low Mood in Young People course, where we explore adolescent sleep and sleep intervention in more detail. The course starts on 1 June.

This article is from the free online

COVID-19: Helping Young People Manage Low Mood and Depression

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