Some of us climb into bed and fall asleep straight away, whereas others may be having trouble sleeping and could be suffering from mild or severe sleep deprivation.
If you’re one of those who struggle to get a good nights rest and are wondering how to get better sleep, you’re on the right page. Though we may not have the cure, natural remedies for insomnia start with healthy habits, therefore you may want to consider some of the below tips for better sleep and see if they help:
1. Mattresses and pillows
These in our opinion are two of the top factors which influence the quality of sleep. A flat pillow or saggy mattress can lead to all sorts of body pain and discomfort. Spending too much time tossing and turning is a distraction from getting proper rest. Investing in a supportive pillow or even a new mattress is definitely one of our top sleeping tips.
2. Program your body clock
Try to climb into bed and sleep or wakeup around the same time on a daily basis. For example, getting ready to sleep at 10pm nightly, and setting the alarm for 7am each morning will eventually program your body clock. This will make you tired around the same time each night and your sleep will naturally break around the same time each morning.
3. Setting the sleeping environment
Make sure the room temperature is cool, not too hot and not too cold. Also ensure it is dark and free of any penetrating light through blinds or doors. Try to keep your setting as quiet as possible; noises can also be a huge factor on lack of sleep, for example a ticking clock or buzzing from electrics can cause irritation.
4. Daily exercise
A good workout routine throughout the day such as running or even moderate walking is thought to be good for helping you sleep. Making yourself tired through exercise is better than exhausting yourself through lack of sleep. However try not to exercise heavily too close to bedtime as this may keep you awake instead of helping you sleep.
5. Avoid caffeine
Although some people find drinking coffee before bed rather relaxing, as a matter of fact it’s actually one of the common causes of insomnia. Caffeine is a stimulant that keeps you alert and energized, so it makes sense not to over indulge in cups of coffee, tea, or energy drinks close to bedtime.
6. Food and drink
Too much fluid or food before bed will cause you to become bloated and may lead to an unsettled stomach, or an active bladder. Of course this will mean more visits to the loo before you fall asleep or perhaps even disturb your sleep during the night for a toilet visit. However there are certain foods that help you sleep which are generally calcium and magnesium rich foods. Taken within moderation and not immediately before bed will certainly make a difference for the better.
7. Switch off
Sleep problems are often the outcome of our hectic lives. Sometimes it’s hard to switch off our thoughts and call it a night. If you’re finding yourself gazing at the ceiling lost in thought or worry, it’s the wrong time and place to be doing so. Perhaps you need time to unwind beforehand and collect your thoughts elsewhere, but not in bed.
8. Create a sleeping routine
Prior to going to bed it’s worthwhile creating a little routine to let your body and mind know it’s almost time to get some sleep. In no particular order, perhaps you’ll have a relaxing bath or shower, and then read a book in bed. Doing this on a regular basis will tie in with other tips like body clock (point 2) and switch off mode (point 7) which will combine perfectly adjusting your body into a well-timed person ready for bed.
9. Don’t smoke
Smoking leads to dehydration, so, smoking before you sleep is a particularly bad activity as this will disturb your body’s hydration and may cause you to wake up for water. Also, considering natural breathing is the best for sleep, the abnormal breathing patterns which arise from smoking at night may cause you to experience respiratory issues whilst trying to sleep.
10. Avoid napping
Napping for some is a regular occurrence of the day, however, if you’re having sleep problems at night it’s logical to avoid napping during the day. If however you feel the need to nap try going for a walk instead, or limit the nap to a maximum of 20 minutes.