- How To #SleepBetter: 5 Healthy Sleep Habits
It’s no wonder we all feel sluggish and unmotivated after a night of inadequate sleep. Along with a healthy diet and exercise, rest is one of the most important things for our bodies. Today, it’s more important than ever to keep our immune systems strong with quality sleep. Unfortunately, this is usually easier said than done. How do you build healthy sleep habits to get the rest you need? Our sleep hygiene checklist can help.
1. Create a sleep-friendly space
Never underestimate the power of your sleep environment. Your bedroom is about 12% of the equation when it comes to getting the truly restorative sleep you need. Temperature, light, and noise can all have an impact on this.
While each person will have their own preferences, most research supports sleeping in a cooler room. The magic number? 65 degrees. Be sure to minimize light by using blackout curtains or a sleep mask and keep noise to a minimum. If you can’t eliminate ambient noise from outside, try using a white noise sound machine or even earplugs.
2. Develop a routine
Schedules and routines are an important part of sleep hygiene. If you’re always going to bed and waking up at different times, it’s difficult to sleep well. Start by considering how much sleep you need. Most experts recommend anywhere between seven and nine hours for adults. Identify the time you need to be up each morning and work backward to determine a target bedtime.
Develop a bedtime routine that will help your brain recognize that it’s time for rest. Disconnect devices such as phones, tablets, and televisions for at least 30 minutes, or up to two hours, before bed. Lower the lights and consider reading a book or listening to soothing music. This will help you doze off more easily.
3. Pay close attention to nutrition
Everything you eat and drink leading up to bedtime can have an effect on your sleep. Don’t eat large meals or consume alcohol a few hours before you go to bed. If you’re craving a bedtime snack, fruit is the best option. Try to avoid dairy and any fatty foods.
What about caffeine? The research may surprise you. It can take up to six hours for that cup of coffee to fully wear off. If your target bedtime is 9:00 p.m., you should stop drinking caffeine at 3:00 p.m. No exceptions.
4. Add exercise to your daily routine
Regular exercise and exposure to the outdoors can be a great way to maintain healthy sleep habits. The better your overall health is, the more restful sleep you will get.
Just be careful not to exercise too close to your bedtime. This can elevate your heart rate and overstimulate your nervous system, making it difficult to relax and fall asleep. Again, aim to finish exercising at least two hours before bed.
5. Manage stress
As you already know, a racing mind can make it incredibly difficult to get to sleep. Try to manage your stress and to-do lists in a constructive way while you’re awake. Whether it's creating a wind-down routine with work, delegating tasks, or talking with a professional about your anxiety, try to find ways to better manage your stress.
If you have a hard time quieting your mind before bed, jot down a list of everything you’re concerned about and commit to addressing it the next day.
What Kind of Sleeper Are You?
[ 66% of sleepers.]:
Fetal position, yearner or log. Side sleepers need a softer mattress to keep their spine aligned and reduce pressure points.
[ 18% of sleepers.]
The soldier, or the starfish. Back sleeping is best position for pain prevention. Go for a firm to cushion firm mattress.
It's time to #sleepbetter
Are you dreaming of perfect sleep? Bedding Plus can help. Your sleep hygiene checklist should include a comfortable mattress, supportive pillow, and soft sheets. This is one of the best ways to ensure a good night’s rest!