Ask anyone who knows me and they can tell you that I would do just about anything for a good nights sleep!
Sleep is something I have struggled with for as long as I remember, and it has mainly been issues with falling asleep. As we all know, stress can play a big role, so here are 10 golden rules that have always helped me!
- Stick to a schedule. Mum was right when she set a time we always had to go to sleep as kids. Sticking to a schedule allows your body to set its internal rhythm so you can get up at the time you want, consistently, every single day. Also, make sure you try to keep the same schedule on weekends as well, otherwise you wake later and feel overly tired.
- Sleep only at night. Avoid daytime sleep if possible. Daytime naps steal hours from nighttime slumber. Limit daytime sleep to 20-minute power naps.
- Exercise. Its actually known to help you sleep better. Your body uses the sleep period to recover its muscles and joints that have been exercised. Twenty to thirty minutes of exercise every day can help you sleep, but be sure to exercise in the morning or afternoon. Exercise stimulates the body and aerobic activity before bedtime may make falling asleep more difficult.
- Taking a hot shower or bath before bed helps bring on sleep because it relaxes tense muscles.
- Avoid eating just before bed. Give yourself at least 2 hours from when you eat to when you sleep. This allows for digestion to happen (or at least start) well before you go to sleep so your body can rest well during the night, rather than churning away your food.
- Avoid caffeine. It keeps you awake and is the opposite of what you want for a good nights sleep.
- Read a fiction book. It takes you to a whole new world if you really get into it. Be sure to take some time to ponder over the book as you fall asleep. I find as I read more and more, regardless of the book, I get more tired at night and find it easier to fall asleep.
- Have the room slightly cooler. I prefer this to a hot room. I prefer to turn off the heat and allow the coolness to circulate in and out of the windows. If I get cold, I wear warmer clothes. It also saves on the bills as youre not going to require the heat all night long.
- Sleep in silence. I find sleeping with no music or TV on more easy and restful. I guess others are different, but sleep with no distractions is best for a clearer mind.
- Avoid alcohol before bedtime. Its a depressant; although it may make it easier to fall asleep, it causes you to wake up during the night. As alcohol is digested your body goes into withdrawal from the alcohol, causing nighttime awakenings and often nightmares for some people.
Interestingly when there is a drop in blood glucose levels, this acts as a stimulant signaling that its time to eat! This happens when one is not eating enough calories during the day and eating the wrong foods, which would affect the normal sleep patterns.
Nutrients play a big role in insomnia as well. Key nutrients include:
- B6-50 mgs before bed
- Magnesium- 250 mgs
- 5-HTP 100-300 mgs
- Melatonin 3mgs (I really like the spray form from Dr. Mercola)
As well Valerian root tincture (St. Francis Herbs) 30-50 drops 45 minutes before bedtime.
For any additional information feel free to contact me by email or phone!
Adapted from www.lifehack.com