Sleep hygiene: 8 strategies to train your brain for better sleep
Sleep is one of the three essential components of living a better, longer life (the others are diet and exercise). Many of the methods for improving your sleep quality or maintain your Sleep Hygiene are easy to do.
Society says, “Sleep problems constitute a global epidemic that threatens health and quality of life for up to 45% of the world’s population.”
1. Create a sleep nest
Setting up your sleeping environment is one of the first things you should do. The REM, or dreaming, stage of sleep is a lighter level of relaxation that is more easily disrupted, so make sure you have a comfy mattress and cool bedding.
According to science, we sleep better in temperatures ranging from 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit (15 to 20 degrees Celsius).
2. Develop a routine
Create a night routine that includes a warm bath or shower, reading a book, or listening to relaxing music. Alternatively, you may attempt deep breathing, yoga, meditation, or gentle stretches.
You’re educating your brain to relax.
And then stick to it. The CDC recommends that you go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, even on weekends or days off. The body enjoys routine.
3. Cut the lights
Melatonin, the sleep hormone, begins to be secreted in the dark. According to research, exposure to light causes the body to halt or stop producing melatonin, so avoid all light, including the blue light from your charging smartphone or laptop. Consider employing light-blocking shades or eye masks if your room isn’t dark enough.
4. Dampen sound
If you live in a noisy city, playing white noise or running a fan in your bedroom may assist to drown out any unexpected noises that may startle you from your sleep.
5. Boycott caffeine later in the day
Caffeinated beverages should be avoided at least six hours before your usual bedtime (some experts say nothing after 3 p.m.). Caffeine is found in more than just coffee, thus this also applies to several teas, sodas, and chocolate.
6. Skip the booze
Don’t turn to alcohol to help you sleep or to quiet your nerves. While alcohol can help you fall asleep, it also keeps you in the lightest stages of sleep.
To fully heal and restore your body, you must go through all three stages of sleep: light sleep, REM or dream sleep, and deep sleep.
7. Avoid heavy or spicy foods
Heavy and spicy foods may cause heartburn or other digestive problems, affecting your ability to fall and stay asleep. Sugar, on the other hand, has been linked to restless, disrupted sleep and may impact hormones that control desires, according to research.
8. Make the bedroom sacred
Last but not least, save your bed for sleeping.
Working from home or playing games with the kids in bed may appear natural, but it does not educate your brain that a bedroom is a place for sleeping.
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