Bad Work Habits, Bad Sleep

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Here are three ways your job may be wrecking the quality of your rest.

Some work patterns can sabotage your sleep, whether you realize it or not.

“CNBC Make It,” a show that helps viewers learn how to earn, save and spend money, lists three ways work habits interfere with our sleep on its website:

Drinking caffeine in the afternoon

When the afternoon slump hits and there’s still a lot to do, some people will reach for an afternoon coffee, tea or soda. A better idea: Reach for sparkling water, take a quick walk or stretch to re-energize.

Logging longer hours

Putting in overtime is sometimes unavoidable, but spending time on work rather than doing your usual activities can lead to problems as the evening wears on. Exercising after dark can undermine sleep because it raises core body temperature for up to two hours after working out, keeping the body from cooling off as it prepares to sleep. Also, eating within two hours of bedtime can disrupt sleep and cause acid reflux.

“To sleep better even after a late night of work, save your workout for the following morning or afternoon, and take a break for dinner at least two hours before bedtime,” the article advises.

Catching up on sleep over the weekend

If you regularly lose sleep during the workweek and try to sleep in on the weekend, “you’re never really ‘catching up,’ you’re just sleep-deprived,” said Dr. Rachel Salas, a sleep medicine specialist and the assistant medical director at the Johns Hopkins Center for Sleep and Wellness. Try to stick to a regular bedtime and wake-up time, getting eight hours and following your circadian rhythm.