8 Tips For Better Sleep
N.B. This blog is also available in Finnish and you’ll find it here
If only it were as easy as shutting your eyes! If you’re like most of the people, you have suffered sleeping problems at some point of your life. It’s normal to have restless nights every now and then, but long-lasting too little and poor quality sleep is not good for your overall well-being!
I wrote earlier, why we all should sleep more, you’ll find that post here, and now I wanted to share these tips how to do it. We are all individuals, and our bodies behave in a slightly different way, but these tips have been helpful to me personally!
Have a regular bedtime. If you go to sleep and wake up roughly at the same time every day (yes, even on weekends!), your body and brain will get used to it. A consistent sleep schedule helps you to fall asleep faster, makes your sleep deeper and it will make waking up at mornings less painful.
Think carefully before napping. Afternoon naps decrease the sleep need and importance at night, so for those who find falling asleep or staying asleep through the night problematic, napping too late may be one of the culprits. If you need your nap, keep it short (20 minutes or less) and before 5 p.m.
Exercise Wisely. Working out can help you to sleep more soundly and better indeed, as long as it’s not done too close to bedtime. Workout will boost your energy and may keep you awake, so it’s recommended to finish it 3 to 4 hours before you head to bed.
Lighten up your meals on evenings. A big steak with fries or salami pizza with extra cheese is a relatively sure recipe for insomnia, heartburn and indigestion. Fatty, fried, and spicy foods will overload your digestive system, which affects how well you sleep. Finish your dinner several hours before bedtime and have a little light, carb and protein loaded snack before bed if needed.
Drink wisely. Drink enough fluids (water is the best choice!) at evening to keep you away from waking up thirsty in the middle of the night, but not too much and too close to bedtime, to lower your odds of needing nighttime trips to the bathroom. If you have to get up at night, it can be hard to get back to sleep and have a deep sleep.
Avoid alcohol. Relating to the previous point, alcohol can help you doze off at first, but after its initial effects wear off, it will interfere with the quality of your sleep by making you to wake up more often overnight. The more you drink, the worse you’re going to sleep!
Say no to caffeine and nicotine. As we all know, caffeine is a stimulant that keeps you awake, and nicotine works in the same way. To have a perfect good night sleep, you should refrain from using caffeine (found not only in coffee, but also in tea, chocolate, cola, and some pain relievers!) for four to six hours before bedtime.
Equip your bedroom in the right way. The last, but at least as important point is your bedroom. A quiet, dark, and cool environment can help promote sound sleep. Also make sure your bedroom is equipped with a comfortable mattress (there’s not only one perfect mattress for all, it all depends on your frame and weight and personal preference!) and pillows (ideally, your pillow should elevate your head and neck just enough to keep your spine straight while you sleep). The screens of your phone, iPad, TV, etc. emit blue light that activates your brain and interferes with your body’s natural sleep cycle, so shut them early enough before heading to the bed!