South Orangetown Central School District

With the midterm crunch behind them, Tappan Zee High School students made time for wellness workshops about healthy sleep this week. “Lack of sleep can also contribute to inappropriate behavior, overeating, poor health, and heighten the effects of drugs and alcohol,” explained School Psychologist Katelin Burns, who led the workshops with fellow School Psychologist Brad Hercman. “The remedy for lack of sleep is establishing a routine and good sleep hygiene.”

But all sleep isn’t equal. “Everyone thinks that all you need to do is take a nap to get more sleep, however there are benefits and pitfalls to napping. Short power naps are refreshing, but if you nap too long you could wake up feeling more tired than when you fell asleep. A 60-minute nap is known to help with memory,” advised Hercman.

Students learned about the different sleep cycles and how they aid with growth, memory recall and learning. “This was really helpful,” said Cooper S., a freshman. “I liked the sleep tips Dr. Burns and Dr. Hercman gave us.”

A complete list of sleep tips are available in the TZHS Wellness Center, but here are a few key recommendations:

  • Sleep only as much as you need to feel refreshed and maintain a predictable schedule
  • Create a sleep haven where you won’t be tempted to be distracted by other activities
  • No screens in bed– prolonged exposure to blue light can be harmful to eyes
  • Eat regularly during the day
  • Relax before bedtime and try to go to sleep with a calm mind

Students and Psychologists standing in TZHS Wellness Center