You’ve had a crazy week. Family events, dinner with friends and the new season of Killing Eve has meant sleep has fallen onto the back burner and you’re dreaming of that Sunday morning lie–in. We’ve all been there and it’s beginning to take its toll.

The average Australian loses between one and four hours of sleep almost every weeknight as we juggle the increasing pressures of life. In turn, this has a negative impact on attention levels, stress, coordination, and mental health – not to mention the impact accumulated sleep loss is having on our waistlines by slowing your metabolism and increasing your appetite.

So for the sake of our physical and mental health, it is vital that we learn to manage our sleep debt. Sleep experts agree that it is possible to recover from an accumulated loss of sleep, but that the Great Weekend Lie-In is not always the best solution.

“It may be better to tackle the problem gradually,” says sleep coach, Cheryl Fingleson. “I usually advise clients to try and work off a sleep debt by adding incremental amounts to their nightly sleep pattern. So an extra 20 or 30 minutes on top of the usual seven or eight hours, repeated regularly, will make a more lasting and impactful difference to their overall wellbeing than cramming in the extra sleep hours on a Sunday.”

If this is still not enough, she suggests taking a short 20-minute nap before 2pm in the afternoon.  

An all-day Sunday sleep-fest might be a refreshing option now and then but try these easy changes to make sure you get a good night sleep regularly.

© Prevention Australia