The statistics on sleep are frightening. 65% of people will have trouble falling asleep tonight. 45% Of the population suffer from insomnia in any given year. The consequences are severe.
We’re talking about difficulty concentrating, memory loss, and reduced reaction time.
These short-term effects give way to more sinister long-term implications the longer you have insomnia.
Obesity, heart disease, anxiety, depression, and a compromised immune system are all at the top of the list.
Getting those needed eight hours of sleep is not just a bedtime story. Let’s look at how we can combat insomnia and get the well-deserved rest we all need.
Set That Alarm
Studies have shown that having a set time to get up conditions your body to sleep when you hit the bed. This translates to deep, restorative sleep, even if you are not getting all eight hours.
As little as 10 minutes of moderate exercise will improve your quality of sleep.
Take the stairs, walk around the block, anything to get the blood moving. To maximize this activity, do not exercise four hours before bedtime, as this will have the opposite effect.
Sun exposure – with sunblock – will assist in training your body to wake up. This leads to the production of melatonin – the sleep hormone. Melatonin, in turn, helps you to fall asleep and stay asleep.
Your Sleep Environment Needs to Induce Sleep
Your bedroom is your sleep sanctuary and should be treated with respect. Redecorate if you must to help you create a calming and relaxing room.
Think calm blue and green tones, soft lighting, and white noise. Some studies show having a lavender plant in your room will have a calming effect and assist you with sleep.
Blackout curtains are a great feature if you keep irregular hours but still need to clock those hours of solid sleep.
The Bed Is the Most Important Feature
Investing in your mattress is the only option. Try for a bed that is the best quality you can afford. Make the bed as comfortable as possible with decent sheets, pillows, and covers.
Allergy proof your bedding with pillow and mattress protectors to avoid irritating those allergies that will have you sniffling and coughing all night.
Change your sheets regularly and wash in warm water to kill any dust mites. Sprinkling bicarbonate of soda on your mattress will also assist in conquering those pesky bugs.
Some people can fall asleep after having consumed a double espresso. If you are not one of those mythical unicorns, fret not.
Avoid coffee, alcohol, or other like-minded stimulants before bedtime. Trial and error will show the best results.
Blue light is another evil that creeps in and steals your sleep. Avoid screen time at least 30 minutes before bedtime. Turn off electronics, no matter how interesting that article or movie is!
Reading books, taking a warm bath, or doing deep breathing exercises will have better sleep-inducing results.
These are the basic ways to improve your sleep, and they have been tried and tested to work.
Almost everybody has random sleepless nights, but if your insomnia persists, we advise you to contact your physician.