Staying up all night, drinking alcohol and getting used to a new environment are all things that make us tired. Sheffield freshers will be doing all three.
Both universities in Sheffield are opening their doors to a new intake of students this weekend.
Luckily for the freshers, sleep expert Dr Nerina Ramlakhan is sharing her top tips to avoid the ferocity of first-term fatigue:
1. Treat yourself to bed linen that really appeals to your senses. It makes you feel safe and at home and your bed becomes a sanctuary. Make your bed up every morning so that it looks and feels inviting at night. Treat your sleep space well and it will return the favour!
2. Ensure your bed is a work-free zone – don't work in bed or leave books and papers everywhere. You’ll also sleep better if you don't use your laptop, tablet or phone in bed.
3. Use calming, soothing aromatherapy oils such as lavender, chamomile, passion flower and eucalyptus oils on your bed linen – they smell pleasant and induce sleep.
4. If you are very sensitive to noise consider getting a white noise machine or a fan in your room. This can stop you being woken suddenly by slamming doors or people running up and down corridors.
5. Bear in mind that alcohol is a stimulant. Even though it might initially relax you and help you to sleep (or pass out), it makes it harder to get to sleep between 2 and 4am.
6. Avoid looking at your phone even to check the time if you wake during the night
7. Try to get regular exercise and fresh air
8. Eat breakfast every morning within 30 minutes of getting up. This will set you up to concentrate better and help you sleep better at night by maximising the production of the sleep hormone melatonin.
9. To get to sleep, bring your attention to your breathing and follow your breaths using the words ‘in’ and ‘out’. Do this while thinking about your day and all the new people you’ve met. Think of anything that has made you happy. Allow yourself to feel grateful for entering this new phase of your life and breathe into the feeling of gratitude
If you're the napping type, Dr Ramlakhan has one last pearl of wisdom to share.
"Napping at some point between 2 and 4pm can work, so long as it's not for more than 40 minutes as this will make it hard for you to sleep at night," she said.
"A ten to 20 minute power nap can be enough to feel refreshed."