Signs of Insufficient Sleep:
- Struggling to stay awake during mission breaks, guard duty, or driving
- Difficulty understanding or tracking information
- Attention lapses
- Irritability, decreased initiative/motivation
Overcoming Sleep Distractors:
- Nap as much as possible to get 7-8 hours of sleep every 24 hours.
- If tactically permitted, use soft foam earplugs and a sleep mask or room fan to block noise/light.
- Do not use any drugs (prescription or over-the-counter) to help you sleep unless you are taking them under the guidance of your healthcare provider.
Best Sleep Habits for Soldiers
- Sleep 7-8 hours every 24 hours.
- No caffeine within 6 hours of lights out.
- Finish PT 3 hours before lights out.
- Establish a wind-down routine starting 30-60 minutes before lights out. Stop using electronics. Read or listen to relaxing music instead.
- Empty your bladder just before lights out so the need to urinate won't interrupt your sleep.
- Sleep in a safe, quiet place: if tactically permitted, use soft foam earplugs or a fan to block sounds; use a sleep mask to block light.
- Wake up at the same time every day of the week.
- If you still have sleep problems 2 weeks after correcting your sleep habits, talk to your healthcare provider.