With our busy, go-go-go lifestyles, it can be easy to fall out of a good sleeping pattern.
Anxiety over your job, stress, or your kid’s erratic sleeping cycles? All of these are regular culprits of a bad night’s sleep. Sleep is an essential part of a well-functioning body and immune system. Without it, our body gets run down, not to mention making our brains fire with the speed of a sedated snail. Getting a solid, deep sleep is something that we all need - but how do we do it?
Here are 9 special tricks that might help you have a fantastic night’s sleep.
1. Improve Your Sleep By...Keeping a Regular Sleeping Schedule
Our bodies react very well to routines, and sleeping is no exception. Establish a consistent sleeping routine. By doing this, your body will get used to the fact that 10 pm (or whenever) is sleep time, which might help you to wind down and relax faster. It also may help you in you feeling more refreshed and energised. That being said, consistency needs to spread to your morning routine also. Set the alarm clock and don’t press that alluring snooze button when it goes off - your body will thank you for it.
2. Improve Your Sleep By...Regulating Your Melatonin Levels
Melatonin is a hormone controlled by exposure to light, and it plays a role in regulating your sleep-awake cycle. Your brain should be releasing more of this hormone when it’s dark - helping you to get nice and sleepy for bed. However, when we disrupt this with light, the production of this hormone may slow, which might keep us awake.
Now, what could be the cause of this? Let’s see...Do you have a smartphone? A tablet? A laptop? Do you use any of these right before you go to sleep? Bingo! We’ve found the cause! Now to find the solution. Instead of scrolling around on Facebook, put down your appliances and read a book. Or, to really get relaxed, lay in the dark and listen to soothing tunes. By doing this, you can help your Melatonin levels to get pumping.
3. Improve Your Sleep By...Creating a Relaxing Routine
Remember when we discussed how our bodies react very well to routine? It’s no different in this scenario. Just like settling a baby, adults fall asleep much faster if they have a well-established bedtime routine.
It might be getting into your pyjamas and sitting quietly with a nice cup of tea. Or perhaps a long, soothing and aromatic bath before hopping into bed. Do whatever works best for you.
On top of this, it is important that you keep your bedroom as a place of pure relaxation and happiness. Try to keep your work and stress outside of this room. Your bed needs to be a place where you can completely switch off so that you can enjoy a full and restful night’s sleep.
4. Improve Your Sleep By...Not Napping
It sounds strange, but it’s completely true. If you’re a seasoned napper, having the odd snooze will affect your ability to achieve a good night’s sleep. This is because napping fills your body’s sleep tank. So when night arrives, your body believes that you’ve already rested - which might make it harder to go to, and stay, asleep. If you absolutely must nap, be sure that it is earlier in the day (before 5 pm). Try and keep it short and sweet - 20 minutes or there abouts.
5. Improve Your Sleep By... Living a Healthy Lifestyle
How you treat your body has a huge impact on your sleep, particularly in the run-up to bedtime. For example, if your diet is high in sugars and caffeine, then you may find sleep a little troublesome. Another contributing dietary factor is what you eat before bedtime. Try and stay away from big meals in the evenings. This means your body then has to work hard to digest it - especially if it’s fatty food.
A top tip to help you achieve an excellent night’s sleep is getting regular and good exercise. This is due to the release of those lovely endorphins, which help make your body ready to sleep when the time comes, combined with the exercise fatigue.
6. Improve Your Sleep By...Removing Anxiety
We’ve all had those restless nights fretting over a deadline or a family drama. However, it is important to be able to wipe these stresses from your mind before bed. Stress management is an essential, and there are a few different ways to go about it:
This is a really simple but effective way to remove stress. Lay in the dark in your comfortable bed and simply focus on your breathing. Clear your mind, breathe deep and feel your worries melt away.
Muscle relaxationProgressive muscle relaxation is a good routine to get into for those suffering from anxiety. Focus on tensing and releasing your muscles, one by one. Starting from your toes, work your way up to your head and shoulders - if you're not sure how to do this, there are lots of tutorials available online.
Your “happy place”
It may be a tropical beach, a luxurious pillow fort or George Clooney’s bedroom. So long as you feel happy and safe when you go there it doesn’t matter what it is.
7. Improve Your Sleep By...Knowing How to get Back to Sleep
For some people, getting to sleep isn’t the issue, it’s getting back to sleep once you’ve woken up. This is common, but there are a few different tricks you can use to help yourself drift back off to sleep. Firstly, don’t panic. Many people, when they awake during the night, immediately think “I’m never going back to sleep!”. Steer clear of these thoughts. They can often result in a build-up of stress and anxiety that psych you out of getting back to sleep. Stay calm and focus on relaxing, trying some techniques listed above if you need some extra help.
8. Improve Your Sleep By...Listening to Your Body
It sounds simple enough, but this is a very important step to a great night’s sleep. You have to listen to your body. If you’re tired, go to sleep. If you’re alert in the morning, get up. And, if you’re not tired, don’t try and force yourself to sleep. This will just lead to frustration and tension. Wind yourself down with relaxation or with the help of some calming, herbal tea. Your body will tell you when it’s ready.
9. Improve Your Sleep By...Keeping It Gentle
At Brauer, we have a great sleep range of products containing gentle homeopathic ingredients. These include snoring tablets, snoring spray, sleep oral liquid and pilules. Brauer’s gentle products contain homeopathic ingredients traditionally used to help sleeplessness. This includes homeopathic Matricaria Chamomilla (Chamomile) and homeopathic Passiflora Incarnatra (Passionflower).
*Always read the label, use only as directed. If symptoms persist, see your healthcare professional.
Taking these 9 steps into account, you may help yourself attain a blissful night’s sleep. Sweet dreams!
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