If you find you toss and turn at night or have trouble falling asleep, try these tips to increase your quality of sleep and coax into slumber.
1. Limit Screen Time Before Bed
While most of us enjoy unwinding by watching our favourite shows before bed, it can interrupt your body’s biological clock. Whether you are using your laptop, television or cell phone to watch shows, the blue light from the screens can decrease melatonin, making it more difficult to fall asleep. To help curb this habit, you can set a rule for yourself to stop screen time 30 minutes before you go to bed. Instead of reaching for your eReader try a paperback novel to help you get some much-needed shut-eye.
2. Avoid Caffeine in the Evening
Most of us love our java but having it in the evening can negatively affect your sleep. Caffeine is a stimulant and increases alertness levels in the body, making it harder to fall into a deep sleep. To improve upon this, avoid having coffee or tea before bedtime and look forward to having it first thing in the morning instead.
3. Don’t Keep a Clock By the Bed
Avoid looking at your bedside clock while you are trying to fall asleep or when you’re wide awake in the middle of the night. Stressing about the hours and thinking about the lack of sleep you are getting can make things worse. Even the lights from your clock display can disrupt your sleep. If you use the clock as an alarm, turn it face down or backwards during the night and turn it up when you hear the alarm in the morning.
4. The 4-7-8 Method
If you have trouble falling asleep, try the 4-7-8 breathing method founded by Dr. Andrew Weil, a Harvard doctor and academician from the University of Arizona College of Medicine, with a focus on holistic health. According to Medical Daily, the breathing technique consists of placing your tongue against the ridge of tissue behind your upper front teeth and exhales through your mouth around your tongue. Then you will exhale through your mouth, making a whoosh sound. Next, close your mouth and inhale softly through your nose and count to four. Hold your breath and now count to seven. Exhale through your mouth and make a whoosh sound again counting to eight. Inhale again and repeat the process. This method is similar to meditating and can calm the body and mind at night, helping you fall asleep.
5. Lower the Temperature
Making your bedroom cooler can help you catch some z’s. Our body’s temperature drops when we’re getting ready to sleep and helping to lower it even more by creating a cool room can help you fall asleep faster. Though if you do get cold in the middle of the night have some extra blankets on your bed that you can drag and drape over yourself to warm up.