Getting proper sleep is very important for both our mental and physical health.
We know that sleep affects mood. Not getting enough sleep causes us more stress, short temper, and irritability throughout our day. Studies have shown that people who get less than 5 hours of sleep at night report feeling exhausted, angry, stressed, and sad. All of these may lead to depression over prolonged periods of time.
In terms of physical health, sleep also affects the heart, brain, and immune system. This is why it is very important to address sleep problems for the sake of your health. One needs to carefully observe their sleeping habits and try their best to improve both the quantity and quality of sleep. It is imperative that one adopts good sleep habits before moving onto further treatment such as medication.
The following paragraphs will give some tips on ways to improve sleep at night.
Stay In Sync
One of the most important strategies to get better sleep is to keep up with your regular sleep and wake cycle schedule. It is important to always sleep at the same time and wake up at the same time every day. This helps us to get a consistent number of hours of sleep each day. It is important not to disturb this cycle by sleeping in on weekends and not napping during the afternoon or evening.
If you find that you are getting sleepy after dinner, it is important to get up and do something stimulating such as washing dishes, going out for a walk, exercising, or calling someone on the phone. It is also important to expose yourself to light during the daytime by going outside or making your room bright in the morning. At night it is important to stay off your phone, TV, tablet, and computer right before your bedtime and keep lights down.
Improving Sleep Environment
When having a nice and quiet bedtime routine it sends signals to your brain that it is time to shut down and go to sleep for the night. It is important to keep the room dark, cool, and quiet right before sleep. It is also important to keep noise at a minimum. If you live close to a road or other people, then a good idea would be to mask this noise by general white noise such as a fan, peaceful music, or earplugs.
A comfortable bed is also key to getting a night of quality sleep. Your bed size should be big enough to properly allow you to turn during the night and not get tangled in the covers. The mattress is one of the most important factors towards having a comfortable bed, it is advisable to experiment with mattresses that offer different firmness and cooling features. Nowadays, options are endless according to mattress technology experts from iSense, mattresses come with adjustable firmness and position enabling one to pick the exact comfort level. It goes without saying that your bed should only be reserved for sleeping. Doing something else like watching TV, eating, or using your phone while in bed will associate your brain with that activity and not let it shut down to properly sleep.
Watch What You Eat and Drink
Eating habits play a major role in how well you sleep. One should absolutely limit foods and drinks that give you energy and enable a heightened brain activity. This includes things like caffeine and nicotine which are stimulants known to cause sleep problems even up to 12 hours after consumption.
Avoiding big meals right within two hours of bedtime is important because they may give our stomach trouble digesting them and causing one to get heartburn or nauseous thus not letting your body get proper sleep. Alcohol is also a known stimulant that interferes with the sleep cycle, hence it should be avoided before bedtime. If you do not have a strong bowel, eating and drinking excessively in the evening may cause one to take frequent trips to the bathroom and disrupting the sleep cycle.
In conclusion, it is highly important to get the proper quality and quantity of sleep every night because it is a very important part of ensuring a healthy immune system and in general a good mood and energy to conquer your regular daily activities. Winding down and clearing your head by reading a book or listening to soft music right before sleep plays a huge part in ensuring we get the right quantity and quality. Other tips include eating the right foods at the right time, controlling our light exposure, and ensuring a comfortable sleep environment with proper temperature control or the right mattress.