How sleep can help you beat the Monday blues

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A change in sleeping habits over the weekends could be making you Monday morning blues worse!

“A lot of people like to stay up late on the weekend and then sleep in, but it’s important to stick to your regular schedule. Mondays are already hard when you shift your sleep schedule on the weekends, and the time change makes it even harder,” said Vanderbilt Sleep Disorders Center specialist Kelly Brown, M.D.

Walk off the Monday Blues on a Sunday

Instead of sleeping for that extra hour on Sunday, Brown recommends using the time to go for a morning walk.

“Light is the most powerful way to control the internal clock. Getting sun exposure in the morning helps us feel more awake, and avoiding light at night, especially blue light from electronics, helps us fall asleep,” Brown said.

Light travels a direct pathway through the eye’s retina and regulates the hormone melatonin, which controls the sleep-wake cycle, among other functions. Light inhibits the production of melatonin, while darkness encourages it.

“It’s very important to note that if you are feeling sleepy during the day or having difficulty falling or staying asleep, you should talk to your primary care provider and consider an evaluation by a sleep physician. Sleep disorders are highly treatable and their treatment can make a dramatic change in your health and daytime functioning,” Brown said.

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