How to prevent and limit snoozing? Why do you snooze? An alternative for an alarm clock with snooze.
Have you ever counted how often you snooze before actually getting out of your bed? And did it actually help or did you just feel even more tired? According to experts, snoozing makes you feel more tired than not snoozing.
Why snoozing is bad for you
Just one hour before you wake up, your body prepares itself for a lighter sleep. The body temperature rises and hormones like dopamine and cortisol are released. These hormones give you the energy to start your day. So the following happens with your body when you use the alarm clock. Most of the time the signal interrupts your sleep cycle and cut this process short. This is the case especially when you do not have sleep and wake up routine, which is the same every day.
That is why, when the alarm goes off you still feel tired and sleepy. This groggy state is called sleep inertia. The deeper your sleep when the alarm goes off, the bad the sleep inertia. That is why you start snoozing. But this is counterproductive because you fall back asleep. When this happens your body starts another sleep cycle that makes you enter into a deeper sleep. So you can see that your body does not prepare itself to wake up after you snooze. It goes into the opposite direction, and you fall asleep deeper than initially intended. The more you snooze, the more tired you’ll be. In the end, you would be better off to set you to alarm at the actual time you need to wake up.
What happens with your sleep cycle is the following: When you set your alarm 30 minutes before you need to wake up, you start snoozing. The alarm clock with snooze wakes you up every 10 minutes, three times before you get up. Which cause you to break up the last 30 minutes of your sleep. Fragmented sleep is less convalescent and healthy. Leading you to feel tired and perform poorly during the day. You can prevent this from happening with the tips below.
‘’Before alarm clocks were invented, there were ‘’knocker-ups’’ who went tapping on client’s windows with long sticks until they were awake.''
Long before the mechanical alarm clock was invented, people had alternatives to wake up early in the morning.
Two extremes: people in ancient Greece around 250 BC used water clocks to measure time and wake them up. Time was measured by the arranged flow of liquid into and out of a vessel. People could see how much time has passed by the amount of water in the ship. The alarm clock function went on when a lever set off a sort of whistling sound. Also, people used to drink a lot of water before bed, so they would wake up early in the morning.
We are lucky to have an alarm clock with snooze! We do not only have this on our mobile phones but also we also have an online alarm clock with snooze. They are everywhere nowadays. That makes it harder not to use it.
How to limit the number of times you snooze
Did you know that our bodies have their biological clock that helps us wake up and put us to sleep naturally? We don’t need an alarm clock to wake us up. This would be in ideal circumstances, which we are not in, unfortunately. There are various ways to change our morning ritual and make it less unpleasant.
Know your sleep cycle. Are you a night owl or an early bird? By examining your sleep patterns, you will understand what you will need to change to stop snoozing. For instance, if you are a night owl, you probably want to go to bed earlier than usual.
A simple change in your sleeping behavior might be the solution. Try to go to bed earlier. You will get more sleep and will feel less tired in the morning. Also, you will not hit the snooze button that often.
Choose the right alarm clock and the right alarm sound (if you are using the one on your phone). This can make a big difference. Your wake up mood based on the sound you hear. Some sounds can make you smash your alarm clock and wake up annoyed while others are less hard.
Several apps can help you wake up at the best time in your sleep cycle. You have to place this app next to you while sleeping so it can analyze your sleep cycle. The app keeps track of when you are in your deep sleep or lighter sleep. It wakes you up when you are in your lightest sleep, close to your chosen time to wake up. This way, you will not be interrupted during your deep sleep and wake up tired. Unfortunately, there is a drawback; the phone needs to be close to you in your bed. People with IOS can use the app Sleep Cycle Alarm Clock. And people with Android can use Sleep Bot tracker.
- Change your alarm clock location
Try to put your alarm clock further away. This will force you to actually wake up, walk to the alarm clock and turn it off. At this point you are already awake. You do not want to go to bed again since you will fall asleep again.
Incentives are good triggers for human brains to motivate us to do or look forward to something. So when you reward yourself in the mornings with a delicious breakfast, for example. It will be more attractive for you to get out of bed instead of snoozing. You would not want to sleep your precious time away when you could have a good breakfast. Or think of an enjoyable activity to do in the morning that can trigger you to get up faster. For instance, play a computer game or an instrument, check your social media accounts or read your favorite book.
Did you know that even the smell of coffee can help you to wake up? A research conducted by Han-Seouk Seo of Seoul National University shows that this indeed was the case with lab rats.
‘’Scientists tested the theory on rats and found that a sniff of coffee activates several genes in the brain in ways that reduce the effect of sleep deprivation.’’
Coffee machine with a timer can be the solution. You can set the coffee machine to start making the coffee 10 minutes before your alarm clocks go off. Not only is this handy but also you have fresh coffee when you wake up. Also, this is a good incentive actually to stop snoozing and get up.
- Alarm clock that forces you out of bed
This unique alarm clock forces you out of bed. At the time set, it will jump off your nightstand and start rolling in your room. You only will get to turn it off when you catch it or find it. When you do, you are already wide awake.
Nobody wants to get out of a warm bed in the morning. Waking up in a cold environment is a horrible experience. It will trigger you to use the snooze button a few more times.
What you can do is the following: set you heater to start warming your room one hour before you have to get up. This way you will have a nicer and warmer environment to wake up to.
All in all, you have to keep your sleep and waking up routine the same every single day. The sooner your body gets used to it, the easier it will be to skip snoozing. Also, you will be able to wake up on your own without needing and alarm clock with snooze.