6 WAYS TO GET BETTER SLEEP AT NIGHT
Sometimes, even though we go to bed early, we aren't able to make the most of it. Why does this happen? A lot of things can affect the quality of our sleep. Let's see how to better sleep at night with the help of 6 simple tricks.
- A healthy sleeping pattern will make a big difference in the quality of life. Try to set up a routine if you don't have one currently. Going to sleep and waking up the same time everyday will give your body a cycle to stick on to. This will help set up an internal clock for your body and optimize the quality of your sleep. If you are an adult, then it is essential that you get at least 7-9 hours of sleep every day. So pick a bed time when you are normally tired to avoid laying around and wasting time. Keep in mind that you avoid taking naps throughout the day if you have trouble sleeping at night.
- Control the light exposure in your room at the time of sleep. Melatonin is a hormone that helps regulate your sleep and wake cycle. The hormone is controlled by light exposure. Your brain produces more melatonin when it is dark, making you sleep and less sleepy when there is light. Your brain releases signals to keep you alert and awake when there is light present at bedtime. So maintaining minimal light exposure around bedtime will definitely help improve the quality of your sleep. Consider using heavy curtains or shades to block light coming from outside windows.
- The soft blue light emitted from your phone, tablet, computer, or tv can hurt your sleep. Therefore it is best to avoid and reduce bright screens and use of electronics within 3-2 hours of bedtime. The TV suppresses melatonin and stimulates the brain to work instead of relaxing it. Try reading a book at bedtime instead of watching tv.
- Be careful about what you eat and drink before you sleep. Avoid consuming large and heavy meals at night time, at least 2 hours before bed. Heartburn can be caused by spicy and acidic foods, so remember to avoid that. Consuming sugar and refined carbohydrates can trigger wakefulness and pull you out of the deep, restorative stages of sleep, avoiding this as well can help improve sleep. Instead, try milk or yoghurt, a banana, or a half-turkey sandwich. For some people, eating a light snack before bed helps promote sleep. Definitely avoid caffeine 4-5 hours before bedtime. A caffeine-free tea like Greek Tilio can have a strong relaxing effect on your body and mind and help ease you into a deep sleep quickly.
- Keep your room dark, clean and quiet. As mentioned earlier, control the light exposure in the room to set up the bedtime environment. Also making sure that your bedroom steers clear of a mess will help you fall asleep faster. It's also important to ensure that you are eliminating noise for a quiet environment. If you can't avoid the noise, then consider getting earplugs to block out the noise or listen to white noise to remove other disruptions.
- Do not stress. Thinking about problems at bedtime can reduce your chances of sleeping. This is solely because stress encourages you to stay awake. Practicing breathing techniques when you are stressed out can help with falling asleep and controlling stress. For de-stressing before sleep, you could even light up lavender candles or take a bath or shower in warm water as this will soothe the body.