Evening habits to help you sleep better
If you’re anything like us, sleeping is one of your favourite things to do. Is there anything more lovely than waking up after a full night of sleep? But there are lots of things that can interfere with your sleep and, if they happen, you’ll no doubt feel tired and frustrated.
Luckily, there are lots of things you can do to help you sleep better. If you’re struggling, you’re in the right place. Here are our top tips for getting a restful night.
- Make sure your bed is right for you
It sounds simple and it might not be what you’re looking to hear, but your bed really has a lot to do with how you’re sleeping. If your mattress is old, or if it isn’t the right type for your height or weight, you won’t sleep well.
Make sure if you’re heavier you have a thicker mattress, choose hypoallergenic if you have allergies, and shop around for breathable materials, as they’ll help regulate your temperature.
- Reduce blue light exposure
Your circadian rhythm is a natural internal process that regulates your sleep-wake cycle, and it’s easily disrupted by lights, especially blue ones. Blue light radiates from everything, including your laptop and phone. Luckily, there are lots of apps and add-ons you can buy now that eliminate blue light as the evening draws on.
It’s probably better just to eliminate light altogether if you can, by putting down technology and reading a book, instead. We understand that might not be your vibe, but if you’re struggling to sleep it’s worth trying for a few nights, to see if it makes any difference.
- Switch caffeine for decaf
You might think caffeine doesn’t impact you, but you might not realise how much it does until you give it up.If you’re partial to a hot beverage before bed, you don’t have to give it up completely, but switching from caffeinated tea and coffee to decaf can make a huge difference.
Caffeine not only gives you an immediate rush of energy, but its impact can last three to five hours. It makes it difficult to fall asleep, and delays the timing of your body clock, which can reduce the amount of deep sleep you enjoy.
- Reserve your bed for sleeping
After a long day at work, it’s tempting to want to climb into bed and stick a movie on, but this is a bad idea. Beds are for sleeping, and lounging around in them can delay your sleep and reduce the level of comfort you feel.
It’s a better idea to devote a separate part of your house to relaxing. A blanket and some cushions on your sofa can work wonders. Retire there for the evening, and move to the bedroom only when you’re ready to climb beneath the duvet and sleep.
- Keep to routine
It’s not always possible, especially if you work shifts, but try to go to bed at the same time every night if you can. This will help you wake up at the same time every morning.
You’re a mammal, and mammals love routine. We force our babies into them, then forget how important they are to maintain when we become adults. If you’re struggling with shut-eye, try getting into bed at the same time every night and dedicating some time to investing in a sleep routine. That way, your body will start to recognise when it’s time to go to bed.
Meditation isn’t for everyone, but it does work for lots of people. It can take a little time to get into if you’ve never tried it before, but it’s easy enough to get the hang of if you persevere. A little meditation before bed can clear your mind of the worries of the day, but if you struggle to find the time at night, don’t disregard the benefits of trying it in the morning. Meditation can keep your mind calm and reduce your overall stress, which is beneficial for sleeping.
- Develop a sleep routine
We’re creatures of habit, and our subconscious takes cues from our environment. If you’re struggling to sleep, a bedtime routine might help tell your body it’s time for snoozeville. Bedtime routines might include reading a book, taking a bath, or enjoying a cup of decaf tea beside a candle. It doesn’t have to be very long, just half an hour or so in the run-up to bedtime.
We hope you’ll find our tips useful. If you don’t, it might be worth visiting your GP to rule out a sleep disorder. Though very rare, they do happen, and since poor sleep can affect your mental health and productivity, it’s important you sort out any issues you have with sleeping as quickly as you can. Happy snoring, from Sleep Express!