9 Simple Tips To Sleep Better (Right Now)

by John Esposito
It is well established that sleep is essential to our physical and psychological health. And in this fast-paced day and age of technology, it has become more of a luxury rather than a necessity.
That should not be the case. You can improve the sleeping habits that work well for you, your lifestyle, and your schedule. However, you should not just consider the total number of hours you have spent sleeping. It is equally important to look at working on sleeping habits that give you a better quality of sleep. Here are some helpful tips to consider in improving your sleeping habits:  

Be more active.

It is no secret that having a more active life leads to a better quality of life. Sneak in a 30-minute exercise every day. Go for a walk or run around the block. Not only does it create more energy to get you through the day, but it can also help in balancing your moods. According to Charlene Gamaldo, M.D., medical director of Johns Hopkins Center for Sleep, there’s still a debate as to what particular time of day people should exercise; her advice was to listen to their bodies in relation to how their sleep quality is when they work out.  

Care about what you consume.

9 Simple Tips To Sleep Better (Right Now)Ever heard of the saying, “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper?” If you think about it, this actually goes beyond food intake and diet. Taking in big meals as your day ends can result in poor sleep and hormone disruption. The key is to keep it light and simple. Another way to help with the quality of your sleep is by regulating your drinks. Swap your cup of coffee for a cup of herbal tea or a glass of water before sleeping. This way, you are helping your body to relax naturally. While drinking alcohol a few hours before your sleeping time may seem like such a good idea to get you to bed, medical research has found it to be rather an unhealthy habit because it alters the stages of our sleep.  

Create a sleep-inducing bedroom.

Your bedroom should be a place of comfort, and you definitely want a strong psychological association between your bed and sleep. If you cannot manage the clutter and mess in your room – which is a habit quite overlooked in helping the body to sleep – you can change some elements in it that can help put you in a more relaxing mood. One idea in making your bedroom more inviting for sleep is by using sheets and blankets that feel comfortable to the touch. It also helps to find the right pillow based on your usual sleeping positions. You can also make your bedroom more sleep-friendly by reducing external sound and light. Using blackout curtains over your windows is an option. If that doesn’t work, you could go for a sleep mask to cover your eyes to prevent them from seeing the light.  

Develop a pre-bedtime routine.

Everyone has their own routine before getting some shut-eye, but parts of it may not necessarily encourage good quality sleep. Give yourself at least 30 minutes to unwind. You can listen to soothing music while doing some light and quiet reading or low-impact stretching with more focus on your breathing. This is very important: set your gadgets down. The blue light from electronic gadgets such as tablets and mobile phones can reduce your natural production of melatonin, a hormone that helps us to relax and sleep.  

Budget your sleep time.

You understand your body well enough to know the number of hours it needs to function well. Some can survive with 6 hours, while others can do with just 4. Whatever that number is, construct that time into your schedule so you can identify your target bedtime. This can help with managing your time better on things you need to accomplish for the day with proper consideration of the amount of time your body needs for rest.  

Control your naps.

9 Simple Tips To Sleep Better (Right Now)The impact of how long you nap during the day may not be a one-size-fits-all thing. A person who does power naps sometimes feels as relaxed as someone who naps for an hour. The key is regulation. If you are to include nap time in your schedule, figure out a timeframe that works for you. That last thing you need is to throw off your sleep schedule. You might end up being restless, tossing and turning in your bed just to fall asleep.  

No Worries!

Worrying can create a series of negative thoughts that can cause you to keep you up at night. It’s always best to leave them at the door. If you catch yourself making lists and going through scenarios in your brain, it might help to close your eyes and direct your attention to your breathing. You can also revisit your pre-bedtime routine.  

Consider taking natural supplements.

Health stores carry many natural supplements that promote wellness, and a lot of them carry melatonin supplements to help with the quality of your sleep. If you are to consider this, a word of caution, though. While supplements are readily available over the counter, it is always advisable to consult with your doctor before any purchase.  

Consult your doctor.

Your doctor remains in the very best position to provide in-depth advice if you suspect something amiss with your sleep patterns, such as insomnia. In fact, there are hospitals that have sleep clinics and other monitoring services. If you feel that you’re one of them, seek out professional help right away.  

Let’s get to bed!

Sleeping is not a luxury. It is a basic necessity. If you make a conscious effort to improve your sleeping habits, you can improve the overall quality of your life.

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