Sleep is one of the most important but often neglected aspects of life. It not only affects our health, moods, and decisions that we make, it also significantly affects our lives in both the long and short term. With that in mind, we think that everyone should focus on improving their sleeping quality and life overall.
“How can I do that,” you might be wondering. To become a sleep expert, use the following tips.
Avoid Alcohol, Tobacco, and Caffeine Before Going To Bed
We have said it hundreds of times, but your overall quality of sleep is reduced by caffeinated products. All caffeinated products should be avoided, including pain killers, caffeine-heavy soft drinks, chocolate, tea, or coffee for four to six hours at least before going to bed. The same is true for smokers. If you are someone who smokes, you should stop using tobacco products before going to bed since they can be very stimulating. Alcohol can also keep you awake. Many people actually think it helps you sleep. However, it starts acting as a stimulant after a couple of hours and increases how often you wake up in the night to result in poor sleep quality.
Use Light to Your Benefit
During the day it is important to get as much exposure to natural light as you can. Natural light helps with keeping your internal clock set to a sleep-wake cycle that is healthy. It is suggested by research that light informs the brain that it is time to wake up. This helps to explain why during the winter it can be difficult to get up in the morning since a 7:30 am it is still dark. To enjoy a peaceful night’s sleep, first thing in the morning, allow the light in. During the winter you might struggle, but specially designed lightboxes are available which simulate natural sunlight.
Exercise Three Hours At Least Before Going To Bed
Exercising three hours at least before going to bed helps to promote improved restful sleep. Keep in mind that the body is stimulated by exercise to secrete cortisol, the stress hormone – which helps to activate the brain’s alerting mechanism. If you exercise right before you go to bed, then you will struggle with getting to sleep for a long time. That is why exercising earlier in the day is best, to help kickstart your metabolism as well as help you sleep.
Create a Good Sleep-Inducing Environment
It is essential to have the right environment set up in order to get a good night’s sleep. To promote sound sleep, you need to have a cool, quiet and dark environment. If you live on a busy street, wear earplugs or use some type of white noise to reduce the sound of cars that are driving by. Depending on what time of year it is, it may not be dark enough when you are needing to go to sleep. Block out the light using either blackout shades or wear an eye mask. Your bedroom also needs to have a comfortable temperature.
Stick to a Regular Sleeping Schedule
Be sure to wake up and go to bed at approximately the same time each day so that your internal clock is set to expect to sleep at certain times. Even if you struggle to go to sleep one night, the extra sleep you get the next night will accumulate and help you consolidate your sleep on the following night.
Make Sure Your Bed is Comfortable
It is very important to have a comfortable and supportive mattress to ensure you get a good night’s sleep. Mattresses need to be replaced every 8 years or so since they will start to lose their support and won’t help you sleep. They also won’t help your back. Read this Nectar mattress review and consider upgrading your mattress. Be sure to have comfortable pillows and also clean them on a regular basis in order to reduce the build-up of allergens such as dust mites.