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1. Had a terrible sleep? Have someone lie to you

1. Had a terrible sleep? Have someone lie to you
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It’s the wake-up mind trick.

A paper published in 2014 in the Journal of Experimental Psychology showed that when students were told they’d had a good night’s sleep, even if they hadn’t, they performed better on tests than those who were advised their slumber was truly subpar.

2. Sleep machines won’t damage your hearing or your baby's

2. Sleep machines won’t damage your hearing or your baby's
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A controversial study from Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children released last year identified white-noise machines as a possible cause for hearing loss in infants.

And while results showed potential for damage, the risk came from using the machine at loud ­volumes and for longer periods and in closer proximity than recommended.

Nothing dialling down the volume and leaving a wide berth can’t fix.

3. Why any sleep is better than no sleep

3. Why any sleep is better than no sleep
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While the idea of pulling an all-nighter to ensure you make that 4am flight or ace that early-morning presentation might be tempting, take a nap instead.

A study of plane pilots by NASA reveals that catching any shut-eye at all, even as short as 26 minutes, will boost your cognitive function when you wake.

4. A “power nap” (The best naps are either short or long)

4. A “power nap” (The best naps are either short or long)
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A “power nap” (10-20 minutes) can restore your alertness without accompanying feelings of “sleep inertia”, aka post-nap grogginess.

5. A 90 to 120-minute nap

5. A 90 to 120-minute nap
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A 90- to 120-minute nap also avoids sleep inertia and helps with mental processing.

This allows a full cycle of sleep, during which the brain moves through slow-wave deep sleep and into REM-stage sleep, associated with dreaming.

6. Stop looking at devices

6. Stop looking at devices
Wikipedia

Scientists say you should stop looking at TVs, computers, smartphones and tablets for at least two hours before you go to sleep.

The blue light – light that is richer in short, or “blue”, wavelengths – emitted by most screens suppresses the secretion of melatonin, which will shift your circadian rhythm and keep you awake.

7. Turn down the heat

7. Turn down the heat
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Most people’s bedrooms are kept too warm for the body to sleep well, says Dr Atul Khullar, a psychiatrist and sleep expert.

Keep your room as cool as possible without being uncomfortable – between 18.5 and 21°C.

8. Keep the tech out of the bedroom

8. Keep the tech out of the bedroom
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Make it into a calm sanctuary dedicated to sleep. Swap your screens for a paper book or magazine before bed.

9. Buy an alarm clock

9. Buy an alarm clock
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Although your smartphone’s alarm will do the trick, chances are you’ll scroll through email, read the news or check an app when you should be focused on dozing off. “Alarm clocks have been around for 150 years and cost $9. Use one,” says Khullar.

10. Have a light snack

10. Have a light snack
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Avoid proteins or fatty foods one or two hours before bed (the burst of energy they provide will keep you up), and opt instead for a small serving of a complex carbohydrate like cereal.

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