Even if you’re spending eight hours in bed, it doesn’t count as eight hours of sleep if you’re not getting quality rest. If you spend half the night tossing and turning or waking up once or twice, I can guarantee you’re waking up to your alarm feeling really groggy. When you actually sleep through an entire evening and get a great night’s slumber you’ll really notice a difference in how well-rested you feel. Use these 9 tips for a better night’s sleep.
Don’t Focus on Sleeping
How many times have you been lying in bed thinking about how badly you want to fall asleep, yet you continue to lie there, wide awake? You see, the more you think about and stress over the sleep you’re missing the more difficult it actually is to fall asleep. If you happen to wake up and can’t fall back asleep within 15-20 minutes, get out of bed. Do something relaxing, like listening to music or drinking a cup of tea. After you start to tire again, head back to bed. If you just lie there stressing, you’ll only get more anxious, and sometimes you just have to accept that you can’t always control the quality of sleep you’re getting.
Stick to a Schedule
This tip is crucial. Regularity is the best thing for your quality of sleep. Try to create and adhere to a strict sleep schedule and wake at the same time every day, even on the weekends. This way, your body knows the routine and will automatically start winding down and preparing for sleep at the same time every night.
Check for Sleep Apnea
A surprising number of people suffer from sleep apnea without diagnosing it. If you find you’re always groggy, but you’re getting plenty of hours of sleep, this might be the issue. Snoring is common, and while it is usually harmless, it is also a symptom of sleep apnea. Ask your bedmate to listen while you’re sleeping and if there are long pauses in your snoring, you need to see your doctor. Sleep apnea, while sometimes life threatening, is treatable.
Turn to the Tub
There was a reason your mom always gave you nighttime baths as a child. Your body naturally feels sleepy when your temperature drops. The easiest way to exaggerate that effect is to take a warm bath or shower then lie down and wait for your body heat to lower. Plus, a hot shower might be just what you need to unwind and relax after a long day.
Block Out the Light
Even the smallest amount of light can disturb your sleep. I don’t know about you, but I despise the light from my alarm clock, so I always make sure it’s facing away from me or I toss a t-shirt over it at night. In addition, turn off all the hallway lights, as well as TVs, laptops, tablets, and phones at least two hours before bedtime. The blue light from your cell is terrible for your sleep quality.
There really is nothing exercise doesn’t improve, and regular workouts will help improve your sleep. But, make sure you schedule it for the right time. Working out raises your body temperature and if it stays elevated for a while, it makes it more difficult to fall asleep. Try to finish exercising at least three hours before bedtime, but preferably in the afternoon.
Avoid Heavy Foods and Booze
Not only are heavy foods and booze bad for your waistline, but they eff up your sleep schedule, too. Plus, they can cause indigestion as well as frequent trips to the bathroom. While alcohol might help you fall asleep faster, you’ll likely wake up more often and the quality won’t leave you feeling well rested the next day.
Upgrade Your Pillow
Find the best pillow for your sleeping position. Someone who sleeps on their side and someone who sleeps on their back may need different pillows. Having a supportive, comfortable pillow might just make the difference in getting those quality zzz’s.
If you’re having trouble falling asleep, why not have a little fun. Plus, sex releases those feel-good endorphins which relieve stress, making it easier to fall asleep. And that’s enough convincing for us.
Do you ever have trouble falling asleep? What tips do you use for a quality night’s rest?