Somewhere along the way, a rather negative narrative around sleep was established. It follows the lines of “sleeping is a lazy, sedentary activity”, “sleep is for the week”, or “the less you sleep, the more productive you can be with that extra time”. The problem with this type of thinking is that it subconsciously filters into the way people do things, how businesses regard their employees and how the world prioritizes getting ZZZ’s.
Maybe this shocks you, which is a good thing because it means you are already aware of the importance of sleep. Perhaps you just want to find ways to try and improve the quality of your current sleep. Or even if you find yourself buying into the idea that sleep is not essential for good health and wellbeing, this conversation is for you. Sleep is an absolutely critical part of our health as human beings. After all, we spend one-third of our lives asleep, so it has got to be for a good reason, right? Let’s explore 4 tips and tricks you can incorporate into your life to enhance your sleeping and wake up feeling refreshed and relaxed.
Let’s talk about the environment in which you sleep. You must create the optimal sleep setting to support a good night’s rest. What is the temperature like in your sleep space? To fall asleep, the body needs to drop its basal temperature by about 2 degrees to fall and stay asleep. Therefore, if your room is hot, and you find yourself tossing and turning, consider if it is possible to install a fan, AC, or open a window to let in a breeze.
How about your body comfort during your sleep? Do you make use of linen that is made from natural fibers? This will reduce your clamminess during the night, as well as provide a soft and smooth texture that is calming for your skin. What about your covers? Do you sleep under a duvet, quilt, sheet, blanket, or nothing? The folks at Weightedblanketguides.com noted that in recent years, weighted blankets have caught the attention of the world for their impact on assisting with sleep. Weighted blankets provide deep pressure input that is calming for your body. Deep proprioceptive input (the pressure on our joints) is the universal calming input. If this sounds like something that you could bring into your sleep space, why not give one a try?
Do you have a sleep routine built into the end of your day? Just like this strategy is needed for babies, toddlers and children, adults too need a sleep routine that signals to the body that it is time to wind down. This in turn causes the body to produce more melatonin, which is the chemical responsible for sleepiness. Your sleep routine needs to work for you, and it might look different to your friend or partner. Tips include lowering the lights at a certain time of evening, and/or turning off all blue light devices such as phones and laptops, ideally an hour or more before bed. You can use a few drops of lavender oil on your temples, pillows, or in a diffuser. A bath or shower that helps your body adjust to a comfortable temperature before sleep is another effective technique. You should also try to limit the amount of food you eat right before bed to let your digestive system process your meal before trying to sleep.
The Impact Of Caffeine And Other Stimulants On Your Sleep
Most people know that coffee, certain sodas, and some teas contain caffeine, and so maybe they won’t consume their usual double espresso right before bed. However, studies have found that to improve the quality of your sleep, you should stop consuming any caffeine or other stimulants from 4 to 6 hours before bed, or even more if you are highly sensitive to its effects.
We need to move to sleep. Moderate to vigorous exercise has been found to reduce the time it takes a person to fall asleep, as well as enhances the quality of their sleep. Research has shown that this can be just as, if not even more, effective than prescription sleeping medication. Better get that heart rate and muscles pumping and circulation going, to get more restful slumber.
Sleep is a vital aspect of health for human beings. It aids in cell repair, growth, and cementing the brain pathways formed during the day. While some people are fortunate to find accessing and staying asleep easy, for a large part of the population in today’s busy world, sleep can be a challenging part of life. Hopefully, this discussion has revealed some simple and effective tips you can bring into your life to improve the quality of your sleep.