Just as a healthy diet and regular exercise contribute to healthy living, quality sleep also contributes to a person’s general well-being. According to research, poor sleep can adversely affect brain functioning, hormones, and overall performance.
Poor sleep quality has also been associated with increased weight gain and disease risk. Reports also claim that the quantity and quality of sleep over the past years have declined significantly and the effects are felt in the day-to-day lives of people.
So, now that you know how important it is to get quality sleep, how do you go about achieving it? What can you do to help you sleep better? In this post, we will look at some evidence-based tips to help you sleep better.
- Make Your Room Dark at Night
You need a restful environment to fall asleep at night. So, keep your room dark, quiet, and cool. When you expose yourself to light during bedtime, it becomes more difficult to sleep. It is recommended that you invest in blackout custom curtains for maximum light control.
Blackout curtains help in blocking the outside light and sound. They also help with temperature control by providing better insulation. Additionally, you can do calming activities before bedtime.
- Get Exposure to Light in the Daytime
The body has a natural clock known as the circadian rhythm. This affects the hormones, brain, and body. It helps to signal the body when it is time to sleep and wake. Make sure that your room allows maximum exposure to bright light or natural sunlight in the daytime, so you can maintain a healthy circadian rhythm.
This helps to improve your daytime energy and nighttime sleep. According to research, people with insomnia benefit from daytime light exposure, as it reduces the time it takes to fall asleep by over 80%.
- Create a Sleep Schedule
The body often responds well to routine. If you create a sleep routine and stick to it, you will enjoy more quality sleep. So, consider setting aside at least seven hours for sleep. However, don’t extend it beyond eight hours – remember you have bills to pay and you can’t spend “too much” time sleeping.
Now, it is not enough to create a sleep schedule, you have to stick to it. You must go to bed at the same time each day and remain consistent with it. This will help your body to align with your sleep-wake cycle.
If you find it difficult to sleep after twenty minutes of getting into bed, get out of bed and engage in something relaxing. You can listen to calming music or read. When you feel tired, go to bed. Take deep breaths and let go of any troubling thoughts. You sure will fall asleep in no time.
- Get Physical During the Daytime
Incorporating physical activities into your day-to-day activities can promote quality sleep. Spend a lot of time outdoors during the day and engage in physical activities.
Ensure you have a relaxing evening and avoid getting active around your bedtime. You can spend your evening listening to music or doing calming activities that you love.
- Stay Away from Blue Light Exposure During the Evening
Getting exposure to light in the daytime is very beneficial to your health but it is not the same during nighttime. When you expose yourself to blue light during bedtime, it affects the circadian rhythm, making your brain think that it is still morning.
Blue light affects hormones, such as melatonin, which is required for relaxing and sleeping deeply. You get blue light from electronic devices, such as computers, smartphones, and televisions. So, consider stopping the use of these devices close to your bedtime.
- Stay off Alcohol in the Evening
Alcohol can negatively affect the quality of sleep you get. Alcohol has been reported to increase symptoms of disrupted sleep patterns, snoring, and sleep apnea.
It is also known to change the production of nighttime melatonin, which plays a major role in the circadian rhythm of the body. Therefore, consider staying away from the bottles.
- Enhance the Environment in Your Bedroom
Your bedroom environment, such as the settings, temperature, furniture arrangement, external lights, noise, and even bedding, contribute to the quality and quantity of sleep you get.
So, decongest your bedroom and leave only necessary furniture in the space. Consider investing in quality bedding to promote good sleep. Consider installing custom roman shades with layered draperies to block out external lights and sound. Ensure that your bedroom is clean, relaxing, and quiet. You can introduce sleep-promoting scents and candles to help you relax and sleep well.
- Stay away from Late Night Meals
According to studies, late-night eating can affect your sleep negatively. So, have your meal early enough and stay away from late-night snacking. Consider eating your last meal or snacks at least four hours before bedtime to improve your sleep quality.
- Reduce Daytime Naps
When you take long naps during the daytime, it can affect your nighttime sleep. Therefore, significantly reduce your naps during the day to a maximum of one hour. However, if you work night shifts, you may need to take late naps during the day before going to work to make up for the lost sleep.
Final ThoughtsThere you have some insightful tips to help you sleep better. It is worth mentioning that almost everyone will experience occasional sleepless nights, which is normal. However, if you regularly have a problem falling asleep, even after using all tips highlighted in this post and creating the most relaxing sleep-friendly ambience, you may want to get in touch with your healthcare provider.