14 Bedtime Tips for Better Sleep

Healthy sleep habits often referred to as sleep hygiene can make a big difference in your quality of life.

This is because sleeping can affect your overall mental, emotional, and physical health and can also disturb blood sugar levels, hormone production, and your level of daytime energy and productivity.

Withdrawing on your sleep balance can quickly put you in the red. You may experience symptoms like fatigue, poor memory and concentration, or brain fog. Remember that you are more in control of your sleep than you realise.

How you feel during the day is usually affecting your sleep at night.

Unhealthy daytime habits and lifestyle choices can greatly affect your sleep and leave you tossing and turning at night. Significant changes to your daily routine and bedtime habits can have a profound impact on how well you sleep:

Here Are 14 Bedtime Tips for Better Sleep:

1.           Switch Off:

When you start a new job, you are reminded to leave your personal life at home. The opposite is also applicable. As soon as you arrive home, undress to something you can relax in, have a large glass of water and sit for a moment, concentrate on your breathing. Let go of the day.

2.           Avoid Devices 2 Hours Before Bedtime:

Switch off any electronic devices, even the wifi router, two hours before bedtime, so that your mind is no longer stimulated or disturbed in any way. The blue light from screens also disturbs melatonin, the sleep hormone.

3.           Sunlight:

During the day, get as much sunlight as possible. The closer to the time you get up, the better.

4.           Create A Relaxing Bedtime Ritual:

Let it be meditating for a few minutes or yoga. Stretching exercises can help take away the accumulated tensions. Do not engage in strenuous activities or intense exercise in the evening as it may raise your body temperature and keep you from falling asleep.

5.           Do Not Eat Big Meals in the Evening:

Avoid foods that are difficult for you to digest. Pain or discomfort can prevent you from sleeping or wake you up in the night.

6.           Avoid Alcohol and Sugar Consumption Near Bedtime:

Sugar is food for the brain and will send a rush of energy when it is supposed to slow down.

7.           Stick to A Sleep Schedule:

This is probably the most difficult but stick to a sleep schedule. Go to bed every night at the same time and wake up at the same time every morning, even on weekends. Oversleeping on weekends may bring jet-lag-like symptoms.

8.           Avoid Afternoon Naps:

If sleep is an issue, napping can rob you from restful nighttime sleep. If you are really tired, do not reach for a stimulant, such as coffee or a sugary snack, hold on, get some fresh air and breathe deeply, call a friend, or even go to bed a little earlier. 

9.           Exercise Daily:

Some people need to exercise harder than other because of their constitution. Listen to your body and enjoy activities that are suited to your level of fitness and abilities.

10.         Keep Your Bedroom for Sleep or Adult Activities Only:

Remove the television. If you have a laptop, do not bring work into the room. Make sure the curtains block the light completely. Use ear plugs if necessary. Make sure the mattress is comfortable and your pillow suited to your needs. The temperature of the room should be ideal for sleep.

11.         If You Wake Up, Do Not Reach for an Electric Device:

This may prevent you from falling back to sleep. Have a glass of water and go back to bed. If you are becoming nervous about not getting back to sleep, try not to think about things that may stress you or disturb your sleep further.

12.         Switch Rooms:

If you cannot go back to sleep or cannot fall asleep at all, go into another room and do something relaxing until you eventually feel tired. Do not watch television or a screen. Blue light filters may not affect melatonin release, but screens stimulate your brain, and this is the last thing you need if you cannot sleep.

13.         Limit Your Caffeine Intake:

Missing on sleep regularly undisputedly affects your mood and energy levels, and often you rely on stimulants to keep up. One cup of coffee may be considered healthy but not for everyone. Caffeine keeps you in a state of stress and your adrenals have to pick up the pace.

14.         Address the Cause of Stress:

This is by far the most important of all. Positive thinking, mindfulness and thankfulness are a few useful exercises.

Here Are A Few All-Natural Remedies to Help You Sleep:

  • Deep Breathing Exercises:

These are great to slow down your heart rate and find a place of well-being. Take a deep breath, hold your breath for five seconds. Exhale and count to five. Repeat until you are completely calm.

  • Progressive Relaxation:

This can help with muscular tensions.

  • Visualisations:

These can help you found a place where you feel calm and peaceful. It could be a tropical garden or a beach. The key is to concentrate on how relaxed this place makes you feel.

  • Affirmations:

Affirmations can help you raise your self-esteem and understand yourself better. Choose 3-5 affirmations such as, “I am enough,” “I can do this,” “I expect others to approve of me because I approve of myself,” “I choose to not criticise myself and others around me,” “It is hard to succeed, but I will succeed because I deserve to succeed.” Repeat these affirmations out loud as you look at yourself in the mirror, every day, until you start believing. Choose affirmations that correspond to you and your personality.

If you’re still having trouble sleeping, speak with your doctor. Hypnotherapy, acupuncture, and regular massages can also help you relax and sleep.

Things to Avoid:

Social isolation is reaching pandemic proportion in our society. Going to a yoga or Pilates class might just be a way to make friends and feel good about yourself.

Rumination, or repetitive negative thinking (RNT), plays a major part in stress, not only as it is linked to anxiety and depression, but also because it greatly affects sleep. Learn to let go so you can sleep.

Do you know any other bedtime tips that did not get mentioned above? If so, please share them with us in the comments section below!

– Oliver

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