PORTLAND - Even if you've tried your darnedest to get right to bed, sometimes, a less-than-great night's sleep happens.

Luckily, there are ways to feel normal, or close to it, after a rocky night's rest.

I'm a late-night, and forced early morning person for work, said Christopher Gheen of Beaverton.

It's hard getting up, because I usually don't sleep long enough, said Matthew Town, who is getting his PhD at Portland State University.

If you haven't slept well the night before, there are a couple of things that you can do to help give yourself the impression or give your body the impression that you've slept better, said Providence sleep expert Dr. Bill Bowerfind.

And he has five keys to do it.

One is judicious use of caffeine can be helpful, so somewhere in the range of a 100-200 milligrams of caffeine, he said.

It depends on where you get your caffeine from, because some of the chain stores sell coffee that is about three times as caffeinated per ounce, compared to the same amount of coffee from your home coffee maker, Bowerfind said.

Exposure to fresh, cold air and exercise is another trick to wake you up, he said.

Exercise is one of the best ways to promote wakefulness and that can be as simple as a brisk walk, he said.

Also, power naps really do work.

A power nap would be a nap in the range of anywhere between ten, 20 to 30 minutes. Certainly not more than 40 minutes.

He said to nap in the early afternoon or late morning only. Any later, and it could keep you from sleeping that night.

If I can, I schedule a nap, said Town.

A fourth tip: hang around the water cooler.

Dehydration certainly can make fatigue worse. I think good hydration is important, Bowerfind added.

And finally, a big dose of sunshine or at least exposure to bright light will reset your body's internal time clock, helping you function better all day.

Even in Portland where you have a lot of clouds, daylight is still the best light, he said.

Read or Share this story: