They say that on average, a normal person sleeps for a *third* of their entire lifetime. That's a long time. Statistics like that are often used to convince people to sleep more or to buy better beds, but what about the things that we can do to improve our sleep BEFORE we actually settle in for the night? For us here at Haumana, health and wellness are two important values that we hold close to our hearts. Which is why we have put together a list of the most important things we like to do to ensure we get a good night’s sleep.
1. Turn off electronics at least 1-3 hours before going to bed
It can be tempting to browse the internet or to watch videos on your phone or laptop before going to bed. Don’t do this! Blue light, which is often found in electronics with screen displays, greatly suppresses the secretion of melatonin, which is the hormone that responds to darkness and sends signals to your body that it’s time to go to sleep. Blue light suppresses that melatonin for much longer than regular light, which can have a direct impact on your ability to fall asleep quickly. Some research even suggests turning off electronics with screen displays 2-3 hours before going to sleep to avoid the negative effects of blue light (1).
2. Having a consistent sleep schedule
This one is a bit of a no-brainer, but it is still an important part of having good nights of sleep. In general, the human body is very dynamic and will adapt to many of the habits that we develop. This also extends to sleep, and it is much easier for our bodies to adapt to a consistent sleep schedule rather than a schedule where we go to sleep at various different hours. A consistent sleep schedule will let your body recognize when it’s likely time to go to sleep and will make it easier for you to fall asleep.
3. Sleep Routine
A consistent sleep schedule works hand in hand with having a consistent sleep routine. Try to do the same usual things that you do before going to sleep like stretching, showering, applying body cream etc. Developing a consistent routine will send even more signals to your body that sleepy time is incoming.
Nowadays, many people suffer from brain overstimulation. Our brains are constantly thinking about different things and our attention is being pulled in a bunch of different directions all at once, which leads to a complete mental whirlwind for many hours of the day. It can be hard to calm that storm that is happening in our minds and simply go to sleep. Meditation can help clear your mind and can ease your body into relaxation. A more relaxed mind and body lets to better sleep!
5. Find things that work for you
Finally, it’s important to remember that everybody is different and some techniques might not help you sleep better even though they work for other people. If listening to music or doing exercise helps you sleep well, go ahead! But it won’t work for everybody, and some people will have to find other ways to relax before bed.
Hopefully these tips will help you get some better sleep in the future, they’ve certainly helped me a lot. Better sleep leads to a better overall mood, better physical and mental performance... basically there’s a lot of reasons to not neglect your sleep! Let us know what worked for you and if there’s anything else we forgot to mention. Sweet dreams!
- Tags: Health