With the coronavirus outbreak forcing us to adjust to a new normal in our daily routines, many people have also experienced disruptions to their nighttime habits, resulting in poor sleep during the COVID-19 pandemic. Factors such as increased anxiety and depression, a significant uptick in screen time, and a lack of exercise all play a part in our sleep quality — which in turn further affects how well we function, how we feel, and our immune system.
“Having a strong, healthy immune system gives us a little more of a barrier against developing a COVID infection, so it’s important to prioritize sleep,” says Dr. Daniel Barone, a neurologist and sleep medicine expert at the Center for Sleep Medicine at NewYork-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center and an associate professor of clinical neurology at Weill Cornell Medicine.
Let’s face it. Anxiety, a less structured day, and staying at home are part of our new reality. But there are ways to deal with these challenges to try to achieve better sleep hygiene. Health Matters spoke with Dr. Barone to learn ways we can improve our sleep during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here is his advice: