Getting enough sleep?
A restful sleep is one of the most important things we can do to protect both our physical and mental health.
But did you know that about 35% of Americans are getting less than 7 hours of sleep per night?
Not only does a lack of sleep leave us exhausted and foggy the next day, chronic sleeplessness can leave us vulnerable to more serious health concerns like obesity, high blood pressure, stroke and heart disease.
Not to worry, we’ve laid out 5 easy tips to help you get a better nights sleep.
Set a Schedule
Humans love creating habits for themselves. This is no different when attempting to get a restful sleep.
To get a better nights sleep, it’s important to try to go to sleep and wake up at the same time every day (even on the weekends). We realize sometimes the time you go to bed will be out of your control but even so, you should still make yourself wake up the same time the next morning even if you didn’t get as many hours of sleep as you’d like.
Creating this habit for yourself and sticking to it trains your body to know when it’s time to rest and to settle into sleep faster.
Create a Ritual
A ritual is a series of actions performed in a specific order. While going to sleep and waking up the same time every day is the habit, what you do to get ready for bed is the ritual.
For those who have a hard time falling asleep, the steps you take before bedtime can make all the difference. Come up with a routine that is soothing and relaxing, signaling to your body its time to shut off and rest.
Try taking a warm bath at night before bed, meditating, reading a book or all of the above. You should plan to start your evening routine at least 30-60 minutes before you intend to be in bed and asleep so you give yourself plenty of time to adjust and start to slowly shut down from the day.
Skip the Nap
When we don’t get a restful sleep, the temptation to nap in the middle of the day can be overwhelming. Coffee got you through the morning but now you’ve crashed after lunch and your body is telling you to take a quick snooze.
You may think you’re doing yourself a favor by taking an afternoon rest but the reality is you’re confusing your body and you’ll likely have a hard time falling or staying asleep come nighttime.
Do your best to fight off a nap and wait til bedtime so you avoid messing with your cycle of sleep.
Sweat it Out
We all know there are a plethora of health benefits to a daily workout. But did you know it can also help with sleep? Exercise affects the chemicals in our brain and helps to ward off anxiety and depression by releasing endorphins and serotonin.
But studies also show that those who exercise have been known to sleep more deeply than those who forgo the workout. A daily workout can help get you into a deeper sleep as it works to build and strengthen our circadian rhythm, the part of our body responsible for getting us into a deep sleep.
Stop the Snoring
Snoring and sleep apnea can have a huge effect on whether or not you’re staying asleep. These conditions are largely disruptive and will have you waking up throughout the night, leaving you exhausted the next day.
Read more here to discover if these conditions affect you and how to treat them. With so many snoring and sleep apnea treatments available today, this is a fixable problem that shouldn’t be a roadblock to getting a good nights sleep.
Get a Restful Sleep
Try incorporating these tips into your life to achieve a restful sleep. You’ll see a difference in the kind of sleep you’re getting each night and your body will thank you!
Check out other tips and tricks for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.