Who among us wouldn’t LOVE a better night’s rest?
I know I would, but sometimes it’s tough to know where to start.
Did you know that your pre-bedtime routine greatly affects how well you sleep at night?
The steps you take each night before bed are considered a huge part of your overall “sleep hygiene,” and can make or break how much rest you get during the night.
If you’re struggling with your sleep hygiene, or aren’t quite sure what that means for you, here are some helpful tips for getting ready for bed the right way.
1. Cultivate an environment of clean and refreshing air.
The quality of the air you sleep in is often overlooked when discussing sleep hygiene. While you might not think it important, keeping your air clean can actually help you get a better night’s sleep by removing irritants that trigger allergies, like dust, pollen, and other allergens. Before going to sleep, switch on your air purifier to ensure the atmosphere you’re falling asleep in is free of unwanted substances.
If you’re thinking about taking it a step further, you can also experiment with aromatherapy. Certain smells, such as lavender and sandalwood, are known for their calming, sleep-inducing properties. To achieve these effects, all you need is an aromatherapy diffuser and a few drops of the relevant essential oil.
These simple steps will transform your room into the perfect sleep haven!
2. Try not to get distracted by your gadgets.
While you may find using your smartphone before you sleep calming, experts warn against it. Research indicates the blue light emitted by screens can negatively affect one’s sleeping patterns and circadian rhythm. Due to this, you’ll want to put down your phone about 30 minutes before you intend to go to bed. Although a blue-light reduction app may help with the effects of blue light in your eyes, you may still get distracted by social media apps that are designed to be as engaging as possible Overall, it’s best to disengage from technology entirely before bed.
If you must read something before you sleep, try a physical book instead. Studies suggest that reading a book for at least six undisturbed minutes can reduce up to 68% of your stress, thereby putting you in a better mood to doze off for the night. With your mind taken off of your daily stressors, you might find sleep comes to you easier than it ever had before.
Learn more about how you can program your phone on a sleep timer here– https://cellularnews.com/mobile-phone/ways-to-set-sleep-timer-on-your-android-and-iphone-devices/
And if you’re looking for some book inspiration, we have you covered with the picks below.
3. Make the room completely dark.
It should be no surprise that a dark environment can significantly aid your journey to better sleep. When in a space devoid of light, the body produces the hormone known as melatonin, which induces sleepiness in humans. However, when exposed to light, melatonin production is blocked, rendering perspective sleepers unable to rest adequately, leading to further exhaustion.
If you struggle with keeping your room as dark as you can, you may instead opt to purchase a sleeping mask. Sleeping masks block light from entering your vision, allowing your body to produce melanin safely and consistently. Within no time, you’ll be sound asleep!
4. Set the mood with the right sounds.
While you might think noise is inherently an obstacle to achieving a good night’s rest, this is not always the case. Some people sleep better using white noise machines to generate sounds in the background, thereby drowning out disruptive noise and creating a stable sonic environment. If you have some money to spare, consider buying a white noise machine and toying with the settings to find a noise you can work with. Some machines offer a range of options, such as radio static, rain noises, and even the sound of waves on the beach.
Alternatively, if white noise doesn’t work for you, you can also try playing music that you find calming. Classical music is very common, but you can use whatever works best for you! Some streaming services even provide a sleep timer, meaning you can go to sleep with the right music flowing out of your Bose speaker and not worry about waking up with the music still playing.
5. Avoid eating or drinking before bed.
Admittedly, the above heading is slightly misleading, as you’re not entirely disallowed from eating or drinking before bed. However, the portion and the kind of food or drink you’re consuming can definitely affect your sleep patterns. You should avoid eating large meals before bed, as that sense of overwhelming fullness may make you feel uncomfortable as you try to go to sleep.
You should also try not to consume anything too high in sugar or caffeine, like sodas or coffee, as both of these substances are known to keep people feeling awake after being consumed, even if the consumer was tired beforehand. You should also try not to drink alcohol before sleeping, as having alcohol in your system can decrease the quality of your sleep. However, if you’re only planning to eat a small snack or drink a cup of chamomile tea, don’t fret too much – your sleep should be completely fine.
6. Adjust with your temperature settings.
While not often the same for any two people, finding the optimal temperature setting is vital to getting the best rest possible for you. Generally speaking, colder temperatures are preferred by most to sleep in. The scientific reason is that as your body produces melatonin, your own body temperature will begin to drop, reaching its lowest point in the early morning before returning to its normal warmth as the morning continues. Therefore, doctors recommend setting your air conditioner between 15.6°-19.4° Celsius before going to bed, with the most common temperature among people being 18.3° Celsius.
Of course, the above temperature isn’t optimal for everyone. Feel free to play around with your settings until you discover what makes you sleep the best. Whether you like it chilly or prefer something on the warmer side, what matters most is your comfort!
Once you’ve created the right atmosphere regarding air cleanliness, temperature, light, scent, and sound, go ahead and let your eyes shut. With any luck, you’ll find yourself drifting off into the best sleep of your life.
And, once the quality of your nightly sleep improves, you’ll soon find yourself waking up in a whole world of difference!