Everything you need to know to rest better tonight naturally
Do you find yourself hitting that 3 o’clock slump almost every day? Are you taking a few too many trips to the coffee machine? There’s a simple way you can fix that: Get better sleep.
Sleep is an important time to restore the energy in our bodies to help us get through the day productively. Not only will getting better sleep put you in a better mood, it will also improve your health.
Getting better sleep sounds like an obvious solution, but it’s easier said than done. If you know you need to sleep better but you don’t know how, have no fear. Here are a few tips to help you start snoozing like a pro.
- Maximize your day time
If you sit around and do nothing all day, it’s likely you’ll have trouble getting to sleep at night. Your body will be confused if you don’t set it on a rhythm.
Spend your daytime getting natural sunlight exposure and exercising your body. The more you do during the day and the more sunlight you soak in, the easier it will be to rest at night. Make sure you aren’t incredibly active close to bedtime, though. It is suggested to wrap up your exercises at least 2 hours before you plan to go to bed so your body is prepared for rest.
- Create a winding down routine
The best way to maintain your body’s natural circadian rhythm is to keep a consistent routine. If you go to sleep and wake up around the same time everyday, this will help your body adjust to the rhythm.
Create a nightly routine to prepare for bed. Your body will recognize that it’s time to wind down for the night and you’ll have an easier time getting to sleep.
- Improve your mattress
Many people neglect the importance of having a comfortable and supportive mattress. It is recommended that you replace your mattress every 7-10 years to ensure quality. Stop holding on to that old mattress and accept that it’s time for a replacement.
If the idea of throwing away what you deem as a perfectly fine mattress stresses you out, you can donate or recycle your mattress to give it a new life. Besides, in some states it’s illegal to just dump your mattress anyways so why not do the environmentally friendly thing?
- Make your bedroom a haven of good sleep
The problem you’re having may be that your bedroom isn’t designed for sleep. There are a few simple ways you can fix it up to make it a haven of good rest.
One quick solution is hanging up blackout curtains. These will help block out light that may be disturbing you in the early hours of the morning. Another option is decorating with plants. Surprisingly, there are some plants that can help you sleep by improving the air quality of your bedroom and soothing your mind. You can also spruce up your bedroom by painting the wall a neutral, warm tone to create a relaxing environment.
- Have a cup of herbal tea
You may have heard that a glass of warm milk can help you sleep, but honestly that sounds like the last thing you would want to drink before bed. As an alternative, you can try a cup of warm herbal tea to relax you before bed. Try out ones with lavender, chamomile, or peppermint. Also make sure you’re choosing anon-caffeinated tea, otherwise it may have the opposite effect.
- Try out nighttime yoga
Yoga will help relax both your body and mind to help you get a deeper, more restorative sleep. By doing some simple stretches, you can prepare yourself for a night of good rest. If you’re not a yogi, here are some simple bedtime moves to help you get started on your journey to better rest.
- Take a warm bath
Jumping in a warm bath is proven to help you get to sleep. Not only will this soothe your muscles before bed, it will also raise your temperature a few degrees. According to Dr. Joyce Walsleben, associate professor at New York University School of Medicine, the steeper temperature drop when you get into bed is likely to put you in a deep sleep. Turn on the faucets, light a few candles, and you’ll be on your way to a peaceful night.
- Put away the electronics
In the old days, this was never a problem. Without the distraction of televisions and cellphones, we never had to worry about staying away from electronics before bed.
Unfortunately, this is now an obstacle we have to account for. Due to the artificial blue-light of these devices, these technologies can stimulate youphysiologically and psychologically which will have an adverse effect on your sleep. Make sure you’re turning off the television a few hours before you plan to go to sleep and resist the urge to scroll through social media in bed to help improve your sleep.
- Pick up a book
If you’re the type of person who needs to have something in your hands to keep you occupied before bed, try picking up a book. Reading before bed will help relax your mind and make your eyes drowsy to encourage falling asleep.
- Assess your environment
If you try all these tricks and still can’t get quality sleep, you may need to assess your nighttime environment. Is there something specific that’s disturbing you? A snoring partner? Loud noises outside? Bright lights shining through your window? Think about ways you can resolve these issues.
If noise is a problem, whether inside or outside the bedroom, a white noise machine may help to drown out disturbances and stay asleep throughout the night. If light is the problem, try out new curtains or a sleeping mask. It’s never worth compromising on your sleep if there is a solution in near sight.
Author’s bio: Laurie Larson is a freelance writer from Durham, NC. When she isn’t working on her next masterpiece she enjoys reading mystery novels, practicing photography, and perfecting the art of making a great cup of coffee.