Zzzzz…! 16 Tips For Your Best Night’s Sleep Ever!
Sleep, oh glorious sleep! It never seems like we can ever get enough of it. Unfortunately life is busy and it’s very easy to neglect our bedtime, not to mention what with all the technology in our lives these days, can we ever truly switch off? Sleep is vitally important for our health though, so it’s great to have a few tricks up your sleeve to make sure you always get enough quality sleep to rest your body and mind. Check out 16 of our best tips and habits to ensure you get the best night’s sleep every time!
#1 Give Yourself a Bedtime
Pick a reasonable time to go to sleep and hit the sack at that time every night, even on the weekends, when you can. Sticking to a routine keeps your biological clock in order and in turn ensures that you sleep more soundly. Change your sleeping pattern only in small increments.
#2 Increase Bright Light Exposure
Getting natural sunlight during the day gives you vitamin D, improves your daytime energy levels, as well as improving nighttime sleep quality and duration.
#3 Reduce Blue Light Exposure
Whereas exposure to light during the day is great for you, nighttime light has the opposite effect. It tricks your brain and reduces hormones like melatonin, which help you relax and get deep sleep. Solution? Dim lights and turn that phone off an hour or two before bed!
Photo: Harvard Health
Regular exercise has a ton of health benefits from relieving the symptoms of depression and boosting your energy levels, to improving the quality of your sleep. Just keep in mind that you shouldn’t squeeze your workout in too late in the day as this can actually make it harder for you to fall asleep.
Photo: Health Xchange
#4 Establish An Unwinding Ritual
Make time for a nightly period of relaxation. A routine like this will mentally and physically prepare your body for bed. Remember that things like reading a book or listening to soothing music are preferable to overdoing it with things that stimulate your brain like video games, telly or strenuous exercise.
Photo: Huffington Post UK
#5 No Smoking And Drinking
Stimulants like nicotine can cause withdrawal pangs that disturb you during the night, leaving you feeling much more groggy the next morning. And although alcohol might help you fall asleep initially, it has also been shown to reduce the amount of REM sleep you get (amongst other negatives), meaning that you wake up exhausted.
Photo: Men’s Health
#6 The Perfect Environment
Your bedroom should be cool, dark and quiet.
#7 Nap Right
Naps are pretty great because they really can restore alertness and increase productivity, but you have to make sure you do them right. Limit yours to 10-30 minutes per day and preferably in the mid-afternoon.
Photo: Brit + Co.
#8 Eat Right
Avoid stuffing your face just before bed, especially so with acidic, greasy or spicy foods. This will mess up your digestion and disturb your sleep. If you’re feeling peckish (we’ve all been there), choose a small snack like banana with a teaspoon of peanut butter, fruit with low-fat yogurt, or a piece of grain toast with low-fat cheese or turkey.
Photo: Europress/Getty Images
#9 Take a Relaxing Bath or Shower
The only thing to remember is not to make it too hot! Alternatively, if you don’t fancy going the whole hog, just bathing your feet in hot water can also help you relax and improve sleep.
Photo: Rachael’s Journal
#10 The Bed Is For Sleeping
Dedicate your bedroom to being a place of peace and relaxation. It’s not where you watch TV, eat or work, so leave life’s distractions at the bedroom door.
#11 Sleep Solo
This one might be hard for animal lovers but it has been suggested that sleeping with a pet may disrupt your night. Pets (and also kids) aren’t usually sound sleepers, so if you can, say no to sharing!
Photo: Mother Nature Network
#12 Buy a Bed, Mattress and Pillow
Why does that hotel bed always feel so comfy? The fact is, at home, we don’t change our mattress, pillows and even sheets nearly enough. So go ahead and treat yourself!
Photo: Four Seasons
#13 No Stress
When we’re worried, we sleep badly. Prevent this by removing stresses from your space. If your mind won’t turn off, write down what you’re thinking about to clear your head. And above all else, don’t ever check the time!
#14 Strike A Pose
Whether you sleep on your back, side or stomach make sure you’re doing it right. If you’re a back-sleeper, choose a puffy pillow. Sleep on your side? Pick a thick pillow. Sleeping on your tummy isn’t recommended for a bunch of reasons but if this is most comfortable for you then make sure that you only have a very thin pillow.
Photo: The Huffington Post
#15 Limit Your Liquids Before Bed
Hydration might be important, so use the toilet right before bed. You don’t want to be up and down all night going to the bathroom.
Photo: Skyflow Health
#16 In The Buff
Sleeping naked lets your skin breathe and keeps your body cool, vital ingredients for a good night’s sleep.