How to sleep better? Let’s find out!
Falling asleep can be a hassle for many of us. Specially if you’re struggling with insomnia, health issues like IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), or anxious thoughts that just won’t let you sleep. You’ll find 15 tips on how to sleep better!
How to Sleep Better
- Practice regular sleep rhythms—go to bed and wake up at the same time each day. My personal favorite is going to bed at around 10:30PM. This bedtime allows me to sleep enough, yet be up and ready early the next day.
- No TV in the bedroom (try to keep all technology in a different room including phones). I know this can seem super hard since for some of us our sleep rituals include enjoying some time on our devices before we dive in to sleep. Your body will be grateful that you removed that blue light distraction that adds to keeping you up at night.
- Create an aesthetic environment in your bedroom that encourages sleep ie. serene, restful colors and no clutter (try to keep family photos in a different room too). The idea behind this is to be able to rid the mind of any physical distraction that may be contributing to your hard time falling asleep.
- Create total darkness and quiet—consider using eye shades and earplugs. I love using eye shades! Specially since my room is feng-shui styled and sometimes I like to sleep in so I like having the option of using eye shades to a deeper, longer sleep.
- Avoid caffeine or reduce it after noon—it may make sleep restless and worse. This will really vary based on your caffeine tolerance, but a good rule of thumb to fall asleep faster and easier is weeding out your use of afternoon caffeine. You can try experimenting with different “last hour of coffee” times and see which one suits your body best to promote, instead of screw over your sleep habits.
- Avoid alcohol—it may aid sleep but makes your sleep interrupted and of poor quality. Also, it is a natural diuretic so it might wake you up at night to go to the toilet which adds to the interrupted and poor sleep quality. If you’re planning to consume alcohol, make sure you stay hydrated and eat well to give your body the best effort to offset its effects and be able to have a better quality of sleep.
- Get regular exposure to daylight for at least 20 minutes daily. The light from the sun enters your eyes and triggers your brain to release specific chemicals and hormones like melatonin that are vital to healthy sleep, mood, and aging. This ritual will contribute to improving your sleep hygiene and habits! YAY!
- Eat no later than two hours before bed—eating a heavy meal prior to bed will lead to a bad night’s sleep and will impede the body’s overnight detoxification process.
- Write your worries down. During your Power Down Hour, write down what is causing you anxiety and make plans for what you can do the next day to reduce your worry. It will free up your mind and energy to move into deep and restful sleep. I actively journal out all the things on my mind on my iPad before bed while on Night Shift mode so the blue-light doesn’t negatively affect my winding down period before sleep.
- Take a hot salt or aromatherapy bath. Raising your body temperature before bed helps to induce sleep. A hot bath relaxes muscles and reduces physical and psychic tension. Add 1/2 – 1 cup Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) and 1/2 – 1 cup baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) to your bath for an alkaline-balancing, sleep inducing effect. This will help ensure your body is completely relaxed moments before you close your eyes to sleep.
- Get a massage, stretch or have good sexy time before bed. Feel free to take this time to enjoy yourself of time with your partner. Even maybe experiment a little together or on your own!
- Warm your tummy with a hot water bottle, which raises your core temperature and helps trigger the proper chemistry for a good night’s sleep.
- Avoid medications that interfere with sleep. These include sedatives (used to treat insomnia, but ultimately lead to dependence and disruption of normal sleep rhythms), antihistamines, stimulants, cold meds, steroids, headache medication containing caffeine. Please don’t take this as medical advice, if you are taking medicines that interfere with your sleep, contact your physician and ask for possible alternatives that can better promote your sleep while helping you with your ailment.
- Take relaxing minerals such as magnesium and calcium at least 1-2 hours before bed.
- Listen to relaxing music, white noise or ocean sounds to help you sleep. I love listening to Brain.fm radio station. It has wonderful music created specifically to help you focus, have better sleep, or just relax. Maybe even try indulging in sleep meditations so you can drift to sleep easily and comfortably.