Getting a good night’s sleep is essential to living a healthy life. However, as we all know, there are many things that affect our ability to get a good night’s sleep. From our diet to our environment, but luckily there are ways to curate the perfect sleep regime to avoid minor to major health issues. Sleep deprivation can have a negative impact internally and externally.
Internally, it can affect our mood, our creativity, and productivity. It also has a huge effect on our immune system which can cause chronic diseases, dementia, high blood pressure, inflammation, diabetes, cancer, stress, depression, among other things. Externally, your skin and weight can also take a hit.
It is said that if you’re between the ages 18 to 64, you should be getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep every night. If you’re 65 and older, 7 to 8 hours is ideal. Due to the many aspects to consider in regards to sleep, we have compiled a list of tips to help you on your journey to a regulated sleep schedule and a healthier lifestyle.
Setting up the right environment for sleep is essential. The right environment can help you fall asleep quickly and will also help you stay asleep for those 7 to 9 hours that you most certainly need. There are so many things you can implement to improve your current sleep environment. Here are a few recommendations:
- Darkness – It is proven that sleeping in complete darkness will allow you to be fully rested. You can do this by having the right curtains, keeping the TV and your phone out of your room, and even try an eye mask.
- Avoid distractions – It is also important to eliminate all electricity and make sure your phone and alarm clock are in another room. This will ensure that you get your necessary hours of sleep without any interruptions. If the issue of your partner snoring is what distracts you, consider separate sleeping spaces.
- Your bed – Many of us don’t know this, but having your pillow under your neck instead of your head will help you get all the rest you need. It is also important to reserve your bed for sleeping, only. Which means keeping your work out of the bedroom. This will help you fall asleep a lot quicker.
- Temperature – It is recommended that you set your thermostat anywhere between 60 and 68 degrees. This is the perfect range to ensure comfortable sleep. We all know the struggle of being too hot and then being too cold while you’re trying to sleep.
When it comes to sleep, it is important to have a set routine. As part of your routine, it is important to sleep early and to avoid drinking anything 2 hours before bed, and avoid eating 3 hours before bed. Having a set time every night will allow your body to know exactly when it’s time to sleep and when it’s time to wake up. Whether it’s taking a hot bath to wind down, or drinking chamomile tea with honey before bed, here are a few things to include in your routine:
- Meditation – Meditation is a great way to release tension, clear your mind and help you feel relaxed. Try it out right before bed and you’ll notice a huge difference.
- Aromatherapy and essential oils – If meditation isn’t necessarily your thing, aromatherapy and essential oils are great to help you fall asleep. We recommend lavender oil.
- Wear an eye mask – This will help to ensure your environment is completely dark. Not to mention, your body will immediately get the message that it’s time for bed.
- Read – Try reading something uplifting before bed. Avoid mystery or suspense books, as those tend to keep you reading all night long.
- Journaling – This is a great way to write down all those thoughts that would keep you up. So jot all your thoughts down and enjoy some much needed sleep!
Although setting up the right environment and establishing a routine can help, it is important to make the following lifestyle changes to further enhance your sleep:
- Avoid caffeine – Caffeine is known to have a huge impact on sleep. If you just can’t live without your cup of coffee, make sure you have your cup nice and early so you’re not up all night.
- Avoid alcohol – It is proven that alcohol can keep you from indulging in those necessary deeper stages of sleep. Therefore, your body will be deprived of necessary healing.
- Exercise regularly – At least 30 minutes of exercise, preferably in the morning, has been proven to improve your sleep. Not to mention, it’s necessary to establish a healthy lifestyle.
- Establish a healthy diet – Be sure to avoid processed foods as much as possible and establish a diet with plenty of vegetables, fish, nuts, etc. There are also particular foods that can help with sleep. Focus on foods that contain melatonin such as hummus and black walnuts.
By curating the perfect environment, creating a routine and implementing lifestyle changes you are on your way to a good night’s sleep. These simple changes will give you that perfect sleep regimen and will in turn, give you the energy to do the things you love, every day.