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7 Proven Tips to Sleep Better at Night

Tips to Sleep Better at Night

How good you feel during your waking hours often depends on how well you sleep at night. You probably don’t realize it but your daily routine and bedtime habits have a profound impact on quality of your sleep. Unhealthy lifestyle and daytime habits can sabotage your sleep, leaving you tossing and turning at night. Sleeping well directly affects your mood, health, immune system, creativity, vitality, and even your weight. Research shows that a good night's sleep is just as important as regular exercise and a healthy diet for your mental, emotional, and physical well being.

7 Easy tips to get a good night’s sleep

1. Keep your body's natural sleep-wake cycle in syn

For sleeping better it is crucial to maintaining your body’s natural sleep-wake cycle. Going to sleep and getting up at the same time every day will make you feel much more refreshed and energized. Schedule your body’s internal clock to optimize the quality of your sleep. Go to bed only if you feel tired to get an uninterrupted sleep. Try to wake up naturally without an alarm every morning. If you need an alarm clock, consider going to bed early.
Limit your afternoon nap times if you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep at night. Don’t let your weekend/weekday sleep schedules differ. Having different weekend and weekday sleep schedules can make you experience jetlag-like symptoms.


2. Control your exposure to light

Your brain regulates sleep-wake cycle by producing melatonin, a naturally occurring hormone controlled by light exposure. It secretes more melatonin when it’s dark, which makes you feel sleepy and less melatonin in presence of light, which keeps you more alert. A number of modern lifestyle aspects can alter melatonin levels in the brain. This imbalance of hormone shifts your sleep-wake rhythm.


During daytime:

Expose yourself to bright light during the day. Wake up early in the morning to expose yourself to sunlight. Spend more time outdoors during the daytime.  At home keep the curtains and blinds open during the day, at work try to move your desk closer to the window.
You can use a light therapy box to regulate the exposure to light. It is especially useful during short winter days. Daily sunlight or artificial bright light can improve sleep quality and duration, especially in those with severe sleep issues or insomnia.

 

Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Carex Classic Plus Therapy Lamp Northern BOXelite Desk Lamp Carex Brown Therapy Lamp


At night:

Avoid bright screens before going to sleep. The blue light emitted by your phone, tablet, computer, or TV is not only disruptive but also suppress melatonin. You can minimize the impact by turning the brightness down. Try listening to soothing music or read a book instead. Don't read with backlit devices. Before going to sleep, make sure the room is dark. Install blackout curtains or shades in your bedroom to block light from windows. Try a sleep mask to cover your eyes. Also consider covering up electronic items that emit light.

Sleep Therapy
IMAK Eye Pillow with Massaging ErgoBeads


3. Exercise and yoga can help sleep deeper and longer

People who exercise regularly in the morning or afternoon feel energetic during the day and sleep better at night. Regular exercise also improves your metabolism, elevates body temperature, and stimulates hormones such as cortisol. It also helps cure the symptoms of insomnia. The more vigorously you workout the more powerful are the sleep benefits. But even light exercise such as walking or cycling for just 10 to 15 minutes a day improves sleep quality.
Exercising at night or too close to bedtime can interfere with sleep. Finish moderate to vigorous workouts at least four hours before going to sleep.

Relaxing, low-impact exercises such as yoga or gentle stretching in the evening can help promote sound slumber.
 

Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
BodySport Balance Disc Economy Foam Balance Beam Fitterfirst Basic Balance Board


4. Regulate your diet and eating habits

Your daytime eating habits play a role in how well you sleep at night, especially in the hours before bedtime.


(I) Avoid caffeine and nicotine

Caffeine can enhance focus, energy and sports performance. However, if consumed up to six hours before bed it can significantly worsen sleep quality. It stimulates your nervous system which hinders your body from relaxing at night. Refrain from drinking large amounts of coffee after 4 p.m. If you do crave for a cup of coffee in the late afternoon or evening, then stick to decaffeinated coffee. Nicotine act as stimulant and smoking a cigarette close to bedtime can disrupt your sleep pattern.


(II) Avoid alcohol and lots liquid before bed

Consuming alcohol interferes with your sleep cycle. Drinking lots of fluids may result in frequent bathroom trips throughout the night.


(III) Avoid big meals at night.

The best time for dinner is earlier in the evening, before 8 P.M. Avoid spicy or acidic foods that can cause stomach trouble and heartburn. Late-night eating can lead to poor sleep and hormone disruption. Sugary foods and refined carbs such as white bread, white rice, and pasta can trigger wakefulness at night. A high-carb meal eaten atleast 4 hours before bed may help you fall asleep faster and improve your sleep quality. This is likely due to its effect on the hormone tryptophan, which makes you feel tired. Night-Time snacks such as turkey sandwich, milk, yogurt or banana can help you sleep faster. To fight after-dinner drowsiness do something mildly stimulating, for example wash the dishes, call a friend, or get your attire ready for the next day.

5. Practice relaxation techniques

Residual stress, anxiety, and anger from your relationships, family or professional life can make it very difficult to sleep well at night. Constantly worrying and brainstorming take a toll on your sleep. Make a brief note about the troubles along with few reaffirming words on a piece of paper and postpone worrying about it until the next day. Similarly, if you are excited about the future or a great idea is keeping you awake, make a note of it on paper and fall back to sleep knowing you’ll be much more productive after a good night’s rest.
You can also practice relaxation techniques and look at life from a positive perspective. Maintaining a calm, positive outlook will help you sleep better at night. Practicing relaxation techniques before going to bed is a great way to calm the mind and prepare for sleep.


Relaxation Techniques- 

Try following relaxation techniques to rejuvenate your body.


(I) Meditation-

Meditation is the best way to relax and reduce the anxiety. Listen to a meditation audio, sound therapy system or a calm and relaxing music of your choice.

Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Conair Sound Therapy Machine  Oasis Sleep Sound Therapy System


You can also try deep breathing and positive visualization techniques.


Deep breathing

Close your eyes, relax your muscles and take deep, slow breaths, making each breath even deeper than the last. As you breathe out, purge out all the exhaling thoughts and events of the day.


Positive Visualization-

Lie down, close your eyes and imagine a beautiful place that’s calming and peaceful. Focus your attention on how relaxed this place makes you feel.


(II) Yoga

Try Butterfly pose or Baddhakonasana to get rid of anxiety and tiredness. The Butterfly pose helps remove fatigue and exhaustion resulting from working, standing or walking for long hours. It is also a good stretch for inner thighs, groin, and knees.

Tips to Sleep Better at Night


How to do Butterfly Pose or Badhakonasana-

  • Sit on the yoga mat with your spine erect. Bend both knees and move your feet towards the pelvis. Ensure that the soles of your feet touch each other.
  • Grab your feet with your hands. Take a deep breath in and breathe out. Use your muscles to press your thighs and knees down towards the floor. Make a gentle effort to move your hips up a little more.
  • Slowly and gradually flap both the legs up and down like the wings of a butterfly. Increase the speed according to your comfort. Slow down and stop.
  • Take a deep breath in and as you exhale, straighten your spine. Press your elbows on the knees or on thighs. Push the knees and thighs closer to the floor. Feel the stretch in the inner thighs and take long, deep breaths. Relax the muscles and stay in the position for few minutes.
  • Take a deep breath and bring the torso up. As you exhale, gently release yourself from the posture. Straighten the legs out in front of you and relax.
     
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
EcoWise Essential Yoga Mat Body Sport Pilates Ring Fitterfirst Classic Yoga Strap


(III) Progressive muscle relaxation

Tense and squeeze all the muscles as tightly as you can for 5 seconds. Begin with your toes and work your way up to the top of your head. After 5 seconds, exhale and relax your tensed muscles. You should feel the muscles relax and become loose, as the tension flows out with exhaled air.


(IV) Aromatherapy and Warm Baths

Using essential oils before bedtime provides a nerve-calming and relaxing experience. Termed as aromatherapy, these essential oils are derived from plants and have been used for centuries to treat insomnia. Dilute the essential oils with appropriate carrier oil and apply on your temples, forehead and wrist. You can also use a moistened cotton ball and tuck it under the pillow or have a warm bath after adding the essential oil to water.
 

Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Aura Cacia Aromatherapy Vaporizer Arkopharma Migrastick Roll On Massage Stick Aura Cacia Aromatherapy Room Diffuser


(V) Massage

Massage therapy offers relief from everyday stress, pain and muscle tension that might keep you awake at night. Massage therapy products are designed to offer deep and relaxing massage at home and in the comfort of your bedroom. A good, deep massage can help loosen muscles and keep your body in a relaxed state. It is highly recommended for people suffering from depression and insomnia.
 

Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Blackroll Twister Manual Massager Blackroll Groove Massage Roller Togu Ball Manual Massager


6. Improve your sleep environment

Making small changes in your bedroom to improve your sleeping environment can make a big difference to the quality of your sleep.


(I) Eliminate distractive noises

If you can't avoid or eliminate noise from outside traffic, neighbors or other people in your house, try masking it with ear plugs. Sound machines can also help you get deep, undisturbed sleep all night long.
 

Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Marpac Sound Therapy Machine DryDome Hearing Aid Dryer Sound Oasis Sound Therapy Machine


(II) Purify the Air

Clean and fresh air can enhance the quality of your sleep multi-fold. The air purifiers not only clean the air but also remove sub-micron particles, noxious gases and chemicals for a good night’s sleep.
 

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Sleep Therapy
AIRFREE Fit 800 Filterless Air Purifier AIRFREE IRIS 3000 Filterless Air Purifier


(III) Invest in Right Bedding

Make sure your bed is comfortable. Bed quality has a profound effect on the quality of your sleep. If you suffer from sore back or an aching neck, you may need to buy comfortable mattress, foam toppers, and pillows that provide sufficient support. Your duvets or bed covers should leave you enough room to stretch and turn comfortably without becoming tangled.


Duvets

The quality duvet helps avoid uncomfortable cold air pockets that are common with down and synthetic fibers. Duvets from Smartsilk are perfect for cozy night’s sleep. The moisture wicking properties of the duvet helps to reduce the effects of night sweats.
 

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Sleep Therapy
Smartsilk Asthma and Allergy Friendly Duvet Sleep and Beyond Organic Duvet Cover


Moisture-Wicking Overlays and Toppers

Temperature Regulating overlays and toppers from OUTLAST TECHNOLOGIES helps minimize heat fluctuations. They help body stay cool throughout the night thus providing relaxing and uninterrupted sleep.

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Outlast Temperature Regulating Lightweight Comforter


Comfortable Foam Mattress

Foam mattresses are the new age sleep comforters that not only give you a comfortable sleep but also help in combating lower back pain often caused by the wrong sleeping posture.

Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Drive Bariatric Foam Mattress Platinum Care Foam Mattress Invacare Therapeutic Foam Mattress


Gel and Memory Foam Pillows

Memory Foam Pillow with Cooling Gel is perfect blend of natural forming memory foam and cooling gel for optimal sleep temperature. The contoured design of the pillow supports all sleeping positions thereby providing maximum comfort to the user.
 

Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Sleep Therapy
Bilt-Rite Sleepy Hollow Pillow Hudson Medical Cloud Pillow Hudson Medical Side Support Pillow


Weighted Blanket

The weight blankets provide a natural calming and relaxing effect by putting gentle pressure on your nervous system.
 

Sleep Therapy

 

Sleep Therapy
Sommerfly Therapeutic Weighted Blanket Weighted Blanket


7. Rule out Sleep Disorders

Sleeping disorders such as sleep apnea, which is linked to insomnia, often cause inconsistent and interrupted breathing. People with sleep apnea stop breathing repeatedly during sleep. CPAP machines and nasal masks can help deliver a good night’s sleep. Other common sleep disorders include sleep movement disorders and circadian rhythm sleep/wake disorders, which are common in people who work in shifts. Consult your doctor, if you consistently struggle to sleep.

Reserve your bed only for sleep and sex. Avoid watching TV, eating or working in bed. Not using your laptop and mobile phone on bed would make it easier to relax and wind down at night. Gradually you will train your brain to associate the bedroom with just sleep and sex.