If your patients are concerned with their habits waking up in the morning, share this article from The Huffington Post with them about how the sound of the alarm might impact their day.
It’s not exactly a well-researched question, according to sleep expert Michael J. Decker, Ph.D., associate professor in the school of nursing at Case Western Reserve University. But it is an interesting one, as many of us (at least anecdotally) suspect that a more pleasant alarm sound leads to a more pleasant awakening.
What have been studied, he says, are dawn-simulating alarm clocks that gently brighten the bedroom as wake time approaches. In a small 2003 study, a team of UK researchers noted that the use of these lamps increased cortisol levels in the morning. This reaction in the body is what’s called the awakening cortisol response, and it “prepares our brain and body for the stressors of the day,” says Decker. Although the lamps deal in light rather than sound, this suggests that “sensory input does create a physiologic response,” he says.