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Tribal advocates keep up legal pressure for fair political maps; 12-member jury sworn in for Trump's historic criminal trial; the importance of healthcare decision planning; and a debt dilemma: poll shows how many people wrestle with college costs.

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Civil rights activists say a court ruling could end the right to protest in three southern states, a federal judge lets January 6th lawsuits proceed against former President Trump, and police arrest dozens at a Columbia University Gaza protest.

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Rural Wyoming needs more vocational teachers to sustain its workforce pipeline, Ohio environmental advocates fear harm from a proposal to open 40-thousand forest acres to fracking and rural communities build bike trail systems to promote nature, boost the economy.

Get More Zzz's, Health Experts Say During Sleep Awareness Month

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Tuesday, March 28, 2023   

March is Sleep Awareness Month and health experts say Americans are not getting enough of it.

United Health Foundation data found more than 32% of those surveyed said they got fewer than seven hours of sleep, although the rate was slightly better in Oregon at about 28%.

Dr. Kimberly Hutchison, associate professor of neurology and sleep medicine at Oregon Health and Science University, said our culture devalues sleep, with the perception people who get the sleep they need are lazy or not working hard enough.

"Because we live in this accomplishment-driven culture, it results in people sacrificing sleep in order to get other things done," Hutchison explained.

Hutchison pointed out sleep is as important for our health as the food we eat or exercising. The recommended amount of sleep for adults is seven to nine hours in a 24-hour period. For teens and adolescents, it can be as much as 10 hours. For older adults, the number is closer to seven.

Dr. Ravi Johar, chief medical officer for UnitedHealthcare, said one of the best ways to ensure you are getting enough sleep is to have a regular schedule.

"That's something that's really important, just having a routine, whether it's brushing your teeth, changing into pajamas, doing some kind of activity before you go to sleep," Johar outlined. "Yoga, listening to music, reading, things of that sort, setting your alarm for the same time every day."

Johar added people should see a health professional for medical issues such as insomnia or sleep apnea.

"Sometimes there may be underlying medical problems that are making it difficult for you to sleep," Johar noted. "The other thing that's really important that people don't realize is how much stress and behavioral-health issues can factor into their sleep."

Disclosure: United Healthcare contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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