We know we’re supposed to get enough sleep, and we really try.But we also know it’s often easier said than done.
Luckily, there are a handful of helpful tips and tricks experts swear by, to combat sleep problems both big and small.
Whether they’ll help you get into bed more relaxed or get out of bed more rested, we’ve compiled our definitive list of all the best sleep tips — just about ever.
Rules of Combating Insomnia
When it comes to general insomnia, there is nothing on the market today that is powerful enough to change your mentality about a good night of sleep.
All the gimmicks can do is to provide a temporary solution to a chronic and very serious problem.
So, the best thing that you can do to prevent nights of restlessness is to focus on your health. If you are good to your body, your body will be good to you.
Below are 17 golden rules of combating insomnia.
- Try Aromatic Sleep Mist. Sleep mists are natural sleep aids that can help calm and soothe the body in order to promote falling asleep more quickly. It’s been found to lengthen total sleep time, increase deep sleep, and make people feel refreshed.
- Exercise. Regular exercise tends to benefit sleep, but not right at bedtime. Vigorous exercise, especially just before sleep, can cause delay sleep. You cannot force sleep on a given night by exercising excessively during the day. Exercise in the morning also has little beneficial effect on sleep. The best time to exercise is in the afternoon or early evening. But, even then, it probably won’t help you sleep unless you exercise on a regular schedule.
- No More Naps. Laboratory tests have shown that daytime naps disrupt normal nighttime sleep. Although many people feel like napping between 2 and 4 p.m. (siesta time), most sleep better if they don’t nap during the day.
- Avoid Coffee. Caffeine is a stimulant, which means it can produce an alerting effect. Caffeine products, such as coffee, tea and chocolate, remain in the body on average from 3 to 5 hours, but they can affect some people up to 12 hours later. Even if you do not think caffeine affects you, it may be disrupting and changing the quality of your sleep. Avoiding caffeine within 6 to 8 hours of going to bed can help improve sleep quality.
- Avoid Tea. Limit your consumption tea and don’t have any for at least 4 to 6 hours before bedtime.
- Avoid Cola. Cola is drinking stimulant that causes restlessness, and delayed sleep. So limit your consumption at least 5 hours before bedtime.
- Establish a Regular Bedtime. Wake up at the same time each day, including weekends.
- Avoid Nicotine. Avoid tobacco use, especially near bedtime and upon awakening during the night. Nicotine is a stimulant. Smoking before bed makes it more difficult to fall asleep. When smokers go to sleep, they experience withdrawal symptoms from nicotine, which also cause sleep problems. Nicotine can cause difficulty falling asleep, problems waking in the morning, and may also cause nightmares. Difficulty sleeping is just one more reason to quit smoking. And never smoke in bed or when sleepy!
- Avoid Alcohol. Avoid using alcohol late in the evening. It can cause awakening later in the night. Although many people think of alcohol as a sedative, it actually disrupts sleep, causing nighttime awakenings. Consuming alcohol leads to a night of less restful sleep.
- Avoid Heavy Meals. Avoid heavy meals close to bedtime. A light snack may help you sleep.
- Expose Yourself to Sunlight. Get plenty of sunlight in the outdoors, especially in late afternoon. Expose yourself to bright light/sunlight soon after awakening. This will help to regulate your body’s natural biological clock.
- Minimize Noise. Sleeping in a quiet room may seem pretty obvious but have you really scrutinized all the background noises. These may include barking dogs and outside traffic. Minimize noise in the house, or mask it with a steady low noise such as keeping a fan running on slow speed, or a radio tuned to static. Use comfortable earplugs if needed.
- Keep the Room Cool and Dark. If you can’t darken the room, use a sleep mask.
- Reserve the bedroom for sleeping and sexual activity. A bit of light reading may help you fall asleep, but if it doesn’t, do your reading elsewhere in the house. Avoid watching television in bed.
- Worry Book. Try writing down your worries in a “worry book,” then set it aside well before bedtime.
- Participate in Relaxing Activities Before Bedtime. Try deep breathing, meditation, tai chi, or muscle relaxation techniques. Take a warm bath. Play a quiet game or read a book.
- Sleep Diary. Keep track of your sleep and lifestyle patterns in a sleep diary.
Keeping yourself on the move during the day will help to regulate your body’s natural cycle, including a healthy pattern of sleep. That way, you will have a boost of energy in the morning that will last through the day, and help you unwind at night to go to bed comfortably.