Sleeping well has a direct impact on your quality of life. Still many of us consistently toss and turn at night, struggling to get a sufficient amount of sleep. Your daily routines can have a major impact on your sleep. We’ve compiled the following list of several healthy sleep practices that can improve your ability to fall asleep and stay asleep:
- Stick to a consistent sleep schedule.
Try going to bed at the same time and waking up at the same time, even on the weekends. This can help regulate your body’s internal clock to help you fall asleep and stay asleep for the night.
- Keep a sleep diary for a week.
Track what time you go to sleep and what time you wake up. Determine the total number of hours slept and if you woke up throughout the night. Also, take note of how you feel in the morning whether it’s well rested or exhausted. Doing so will give you key insights into your sleeping habits and be useful to your doctor if you believe you are suffering from a sleep disorder.
- Power down before bedtime.
Bright light is one of the largest triggers to our brains that it’s time to be awake and alert. Dim the lights and turn off all your devices at least 30 minutes prior to bedtime.
- Exercise regularly.
Adding even just a few minutes of physical activity to your day can make a difference in your rest. Regular, vigorous exercise it best, but even light exercise is better than no activity.
- Cut the caffeine.
Caffeine is a stimulant that can keep you awake. It’s found in coffee, tea, chocolate, cola, and some pain relievers. Experts recommend avoiding caffeine four to six hours before bedtime.
- Avoid large meals before bedtime.
Your body isn’t meant to be digesting while you sleep. Try avoiding eating large meals for two to three hours before bedtime. If you get hungry, have a light healthy snack 45 minutes before bed.
- Improve your sleep environment.
Sometimes even minor changes to your bedroom can make a big difference in your quality of sleep. A quiet, dark, and cool setting can help promote a good night’s rest. Try keeping your bedroom free from any noise that may disrupt your sleep. If you can’t eliminate the noise, try masking it with a sound machine or a fan.
If your sleep difficulties don’t improve through good sleep hygiene, you may be suffering from a sleep disorder. An estimated twenty percent of adult Americans suffer from Sleep Apnea, and ninety percent go undiagnosed. Our mission at AmeriSleep Diagnostics is to provide comprehensive diagnostics, education and treatment of sleep disorders.
Contact us today at www.amerisleepsd.com/contact/ or (619) 717–8102 to take your first step toward a better night sleep.
White noise is described as a combination of all of the different frequencies of sound. While sleeping, our hearing is still alert and our brains still continue to process sounds. White noise is used to create a masking effect for those sounds, blocking out unexpected changes or inconsistencies in noise that disturbs light sleepers and people trying to fall asleep. The monotonous attribute of white noise makes it easy for us to ignore.
According to an article by Huffington Post, because white noise is steady but unpredictable, it gently draws our attention without requiring any actual focus. Dr. Christopher Winter, a neurologist and sleep medicine doctor, explains that with white noise “There’s really nothing there to process — it’s a very basic, nonrepetitive sound.” Huffington Post described a sleep study from 2014, in which an audio was played of someone reading words while people slept. The results showed that the “sleeping participants’ brains automatically categorized the words being read as either verbs or colors”.
Genuine white noise can only be generated electronically. However, there are other types of white noise used to promote healthy sleep, such as: nature sounds, machinery noises and ambient soundscapes. Some people prefer those background noises compared to the harsh tone of pure white noise.
Want to find out if white noise helps you sleep better without having to purchase a sound machine? Try using a fan or a free white noise or nature sound MP3. Another option is to download a white noise application on your smartphone.
Getting a good night’s sleep is crucial to your daily function in several aspects. Having trouble falling asleep can be extremely frustrating and certainly hinders your ability to get the adequate amount of rest. Following are a few ideas to help you fall asleep faster:
Hide Your Clock
If you toss and turn while watching the minutes get closer and closer to morning, hide your clock. Checking the time often can increase stress and make it harder to fall asleep.
Turn Down the Temp
A cooler bedroom is ideal for better sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, your bedroom temperature should be between 60-67 degrees Fahrenheit for an optimal night’s sleep.
Cut the Caffeine
You’ve heard this one before, but it is easy to forget when you are sluggish in the afternoon and need a little pick-me-up. Many people make it a habit to rely on caffeine to get through their day, however, having caffeine later in the day could be what’s keeping you up at night and stopping you from falling asleep at a reasonable hour. Try eliminating caffeine after lunchtime.
Drown Out the Noise
If it’s noise that’s keeping you up late at night, try downloading a white-noise app to play a calming continuous noise throughout the night. Having a consistent sound such as a white noise, a rainstorm or ocean could help drown out external noises that are distracting you from falling asleep.
Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender is effectively a natural relaxant and research has shown that its scent can ease anxiety and insomnia. Try sprinkling a few drops of pure lavender essential oil on a tissue and tucking under your pillow or using an aromatherapy diffuser.
Tried these tips and still having trouble falling asleep? You may be suffering from a sleep disorder. An estimated twenty percent of adult Americans suffer from Sleep Apnea, and ninety percent go undiagnosed.
Our mission at AmeriSleep Diagnostics is to provide comprehensive diagnostics, education and treatment of sleep disorders. Contact us today at www.amerisleepsd.com or (619) 717–8102 to take your first step toward a better night sleep.