Before you decide you have insomnia, the chances are that all you need is a better sleep routine. Try out our tips for a good night’s rest.
1. Sound environment
First thing’s first – eliminate all distractions. Your sleeping environment needs to be peaceful. If there is light in your room, wear an eye mask. If your neighbours are too loud, wear ear plugs.
2. Avoid stimulants
Coffee drinkers already know that caffeine is a stimulant, but the same goes for tea, chocolate, soft drinks and nicotine; try to avoid all of these after dinner.
3. Say no to naps
When changing your sleeping patterns, napping is your enemy. If you need a quick recharge, try to keep your naps short and have them before 5pm.
This may sound a little drastic, but if you are in need of a complete sleep readjustment, studies show that fasting 16 hours before you need to wake up can help reset your ‘inner-clock’.
5. Social media
Find yourself waking up to check your phone? Social media could be the culprit to your lack of sleep. Keep your smartphone out of reach; no tweet or Facebook status will help you wake up fresh in the morning. Also, having to get up to turn off your phone alarm can also prove useful if you have a habit of hitting the snooze button in the morning.
6. Establish a ritual
Try relaxing right before you go to bed. Light a candle, take a bath or read a book. It is also important to avoid stressful activities like work or discussing emotional issues.
7. Sleep when you’re tired
Forcing yourself to doze off when your body isn’t ready won’t help your situation. Also, struggling to fall asleep just leads to frustration. Avoid the bed until you truly feel tired.
8. Balance fluid intake
Drink enough water at night to keep you from waking up thirsty; and, yes, that age old myth of a warm glass of milk before bed really does help you relax.
9. Exercise early
Exercise can help you nod off faster as long as it’s done at the right time. A workout can stimulates the body to release stress hormones, making the brain active and alert. So make sure you hit the gym atleast three hours before bed.
10. Set a bedtime
Your parents gave you bedtimes for a good reason. Sleeping and waking up at the same time every day can help your body develop a routine that your body can get use to.