To have a better and more efficient sleeping schedule you need to understand the true importance and relevance that sleep has for your body. As you drift to sleep, your body continues to work hard to keep you in good shape, from healing damaged cells, boosting your immune system to recharging your cardiovascular system for the next day. So, it is essential for you as a whole to get the right amount of sleep to be ready for a new day.
In general, adults need an average of 8 hours of sleep per night, but often we tend to get distracted by our busy lives and forget the importance of rest, so here is a list of some tips you might want to consider for improving your sleep at night.
Stick to a personal sleeping schedule
After a long day, try to wind down and cut any demanding activities before going to bed. A relaxing activity like reading a book helps the body to easily pass into the sleeping state.
Also, try to stick to a sleep schedule by waking up and going to bed at the same hours, even on the weekends. This helps with regulating your body’s internal clock and it could help you fall and stay asleep for the night.
Exercise on a daily basis
People who exercise regularly have a better night sleep, whether we are talking about a well-planned fitness routine or a 30-minute walk in the park. Regular exercise improves the symptoms of insomnia and increases the time you spend in the deep stages of sleep.
The downside is that your body can take up to several months to adapt to your exercising routine to give you the full-sleep promised effects. Also, try to restrain from vigorous physical activities at least 4 hours before bedtime.
Evaluate your space
A peaceful sleeping routine depends a lot on the environment that surrounds you. Make sure your bedroom is a cool, quiet and dark place. Keep the noise down by using earplugs if needed.
Make sure the mattress and pillow you use are comfortable and suited for your body shape. Use your bed only for sleeping and leisure activities so that your brain will associate your bedroom with relaxation time. It’s not indicated to use your laptop, to work, or to eat in bed.
What you should avoid
Alcohol, cigarettes, caffeine and spicy food can disrupt your sleeping schedule. Try to cut caffeine after 2 PM, or switch to decaffeinated, and restrain from eating any large meal 2-3 hours before bed.
A light snack should be taken about 45 minutes before sleep time if you are hungry. Also, avoid bright lights in the evening, and avoid using any electronic devices two hours before going to bed, because of the negative effects that the blue light they emit has upon us. Blue light tricks your brain into believing it’s still daytime, affecting your circadian rhythm.
Avoid irregular or long naps
Even though it might seem counterintuitive, eliminating naps will increase the chance of you getting a longer and deeper night’s sleep.
However, some studies show that those who are used to taking regular naps do not have trouble getting a full night’s sleep. Therefore, the effects of napping vary from one individual to another, and you should try and find your own balance.
Focus on your body
Studies show that taking a bath circa 90 minutes before going to bed improves sleep quality, especially for old adults. If you don’t feel like taking a bath, bathing your feet in hot water should help, too. Also, essential oil, especially lavender, has soothing proprieties and is known for its benefits of reducing stress, guaranteeing a good night’s sleep.
Ways to get back to sleep
It is normal to briefly wake up during the night, but it sometimes can become stressful if you can’t seem to be able to go back to sleep. Try to stay out of your mind, don’t stress too much over it because the stress only encourages the body to stay awake. Do a breathing exercise, focus on your feelings and make relaxation your goal, not actually going to sleep.