This Sleep Awareness Week, Austin Health’s sleep experts remind us all that sleep is integral to good health, particularly at times when we’re under stress.
Dr. Maree Barnes has helped to create some information sheets to help staff with their sleep during the COVID-19 pandemic.
She says that sleep is important for our immune system to function well, as well as for making good decisions and managing stress.
“During sleep, the body manufactures and releases cytokines, which are proteins that help the body to fight infection. So if you don't have enough sleep or your sleep is of poor quality, you are less able to fight off the virus if you are exposed and you will take longer to recover,” says Maree.
Unfortunately though, she says that stress can also make it harder to sleep – and for those who are in isolation or working from home, there are more challenges.
“Our daily rhythms are set by many of the routine things that we do - what time we get up, when we eat, exercise and work commitments. If you are kept indoors and in isolation for a prolonged period, many of these routines could change, thus affecting your sleep,” she says.
So how can we get a good night’s sleep with all this stress and disruption?
Maree’s tips include:
For more of Maree's advice, listen to her podcasts for staff on the COVID-19 Sharepoint site.
Head Scientist Tom Churchward agrees.
“It is important to recognise the substantial changes to our lifestyle and routines that working from home and isolation bring,” Tom says.
“Separate 'I am at work' time from 'I not at work time' by consciously deciding when you start and stop work. There will be intrusions from one to the other - and that's ok - but at least have that 'template' of which mode you are in so you can focus on being productive when at work and have a proper break from work at other times,” he says.
“Finally, balance brief checks of current news and advice (we all need to stay informed) with ample time out from looking at the news or social media and instead doing some things you enjoy at home.”
(This article is a reprint from Austin iNews https://inews.austin.org.au/news/1683)
Posted 4 years ago
Researchers at Austin Health are looking for volunteers to participate in a study exploring the impact shift work has on breast milk composition. Participants will be compensated with a $100 gift voucher.
Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is a chronic lung condition that causes stiff lungs and restricts sufferers from taking a deep breath. Exercise in a gym, or swimming, walking or riding a bike, can help...
Interested to participate in a study investigating the effect of fatigue on driving performance?
IBAS leads project to revolutionize Home Ventilation with $1.2 million grant for Assoc. Prof Mark Howard's research titled "Synchronise non-invasive ventilation at home".
Prof Anne Holland receives prestigious award for Excellent in Research Engagement and Impact from Monash University.
The benefits of quality sleep and to acknowledge the issue of sleep problems and their medical, educational, and social aspects as well as the prevention and management of sleep disorders, is promoted on World Sleep Day on the 17th March 2023.
The Australian's Research magazine names the top researcher and top research institution in each field of research, based on the number of citations for papers published in the top 20 journals in each field over the past five years.