Daytime sleepiness is an annoying daily disturbance that interferes with daily activities, resulting in fatigue, poor decision-making and in severe cases, accidents. Fortunately, there are quick remedies to help produce temporary alertness throughout the day. The ultimate goal is to change lifestyle habits and prevent daytime sleepiness altogether.
Caffeinated drinks like coffee, black tea, green tea, yerba mate, energizing drinks and even sodas, all stimulate the brain and give a temporary boost of energy. Find the right kind of caffeinated drink to avoid crashes or other side effects. For many, coffee is too strong, which results in upset stomach and jitters. For others, sugar may be a factor, and energizing drinks and sodas should be avoided.
It is surprising how effective a 15-minute break can be. Daytime sleepiness can often be triggered by the monotony of doing the same thing over and over again. Whether it is staring at a computer screen or driving on a long stretch of highway for hours, the boredom can become tiresome. Take a walk outside and get some fresh air. If you only have a couple of minutes, stand up and stretch out your entire body from the fingers to the arms to the back -- waking up your body will help wake up your mind.
Food and Water
Hunger and dehydration can also encourage daytime sleepiness. Fill a water bottle and occasionally take sips to stay hydrated throughout the day. Also, do not skip out on any meals as low blood sugar will make you tired and sleepy. If you are too busy to take a lunch break during the day, have some healthy, easy-to-eat snacks like nuts, bananas, celery sticks or string cheese, nearby to munch on.
Power naps, preferably 15 to 20 minutes can recharge your body and mind. If you have the luxury to sneak in a quick nap during the day, listen to your body and oblige but keep it less than an hour – anything more will disrupt your nighttime sleeping regime.
Ultimately, it is important to prevent daytime sleepiness; and fortunately, these are easy remedies. Be consistent with the times you go to sleep and wake up. It is recommended adults sleep eight hours a day. To induce sleep at an earlier time, consider eating a light, early dinner. Try a cup of soothing herbal tea like peppermint or chamomile to relax your senses. Instead of falling asleep to the television, which often engages the mind, try reading a book or listening to soft sounds or music. Finally, stick to a repetitive schedule of unwinding before bed. Getting into the habit of unwinding will help your body naturally remembers it is time to sleep.