9 Ways to Improve Sleep Quality
By Myrtle Bautista
Tired of counting sheep and still not getting a good night's rest? Fear not! Here are 9 surefire ways to improve your sleep quality and wake up refreshed and rejuvenated. From setting a bedtime routine to investing in a comfortable mattress, these tips will surely have you snoozing like a baby in no time. So, grab a cozy blanket, and let's dive into Slumberland.
Top hacks for blissful sleep
1. Stick to a consistent sleep schedule.
Are you a night owl but trying to be an early bird? Or perhaps a morning person who attempts to stay up late now and then? Consistency is absolutely essential when it comes to getting a good night's rest. Sticking to a regular bedtime and wake-up time, even on weekends, can lead to better sleep.
But, let's face it, it's not always as easy as it sounds. Get more deep sleep by setting a bedtime reminder on your phone. Next, craft a bedtime routine you can follow every night to prepare your body for sleep.
2. Create a sleep-conducive environment.
You may think your environment is not affecting your sleep, but it sure does. So, dim the lights, get some cozy illumination from beeswax candles, and add some plants to your bedroom. Also, keep your bedroom comfortably cool, and use a white noise machine to block out unwanted sounds.
Most importantly, banish all screens from the bedroom. The blue light emitted from phones, tablets, and TVs can suppress melatonin production and disrupt your natural sleep patterns. This can make it more challenging for you to doze off. Instead, try reading a book or listening to soothing music.
3. Watch what you drink.
Your mother was right! If you want to sleep like a log, you've got to limit your caffeine and alcohol consumption. Caffeine, found in coffee, tea, and chocolate, can linger in the body for up to six hours. So, avoid consuming caffeine-loaded beverages after 2 pm.
Another drink to avoid is alcohol. Although it can get you drowsy at first, it can disturb your sleep later in the night. Why not have a warm cup of herbal tea before bed or even a glass of water to help you relax and unwind ? Remember, a good night's sleep starts with the decisions you make during the day, so choose wisely!
4. Practice relaxation techniques.
Feeling stressed and anxious can keep you from falling asleep. Fortunately, there are relaxation techniques to help you drift off into dreamland in a snap. Meditation and deep breathing are great ways to quiet the mind and body before bed. For example, you can try a yoga technique like Child's Pose. Or you can sit still and focus on your breath. You can also practice guided meditation or progressive muscle relaxation. The latter is the practice of tensing and then releasing each muscle group in your body, starting from your feet and working your way up. Whatever unwinding method you pick, the key is to find what's doable for you on a consistent basis.
5. Exercise regularly.
Working out is a critical part of a healthy routine. A moderate workout during the day can help you drift off to sleep faster and stay asleep longer. But, when it comes to exercise and slumber, timing is everything. Avoid disrupting sleeping patterns by scheduling your training in the morning or early afternoon. This is because exercising in the morning can help regulate your body's internal clock and make it easier for you to nod off at night.
Additionally, the natural release of endorphins during exercise can help improve mood and reduce stress. This enables you to unwind before you hit the sack.
It's also best to stay away from intense physical routines close to bedtime. This can rev up the body and make it harder to flake out. A good rule of thumb is to finish your workout at least 3 hours before bed.
6. Avoid heavy meals before bedtime.
Eating a big meal close to bedtime can cause indigestion and discomfort, keeping you from quickly falling asleep. Instead, try a light snack that contains tryptophan, an amino acid that helps promote sleep. You can also opt to have a small serving of cottage cheese, a hard-boiled egg, or a banana. And remember to drink plenty of water throughout the day. However, avoid fluids close to bedtime to minimize those middle-of-the-night trips to the bathroom.
7. Take a relaxing bath or shower.
A relaxing bath or shower before bed is definitely a refreshing treat. But on top of this, the warm water can help relax your muscles and lower your body temperature. This helps get you into a drowsy state.
Elevate your bathing experience with some Epsom salts. These contain magnesium to help ease tension and improve sleep quality. You can also add several drops of lavender or chamomile oil to your bathwater. These oils are known for their calming properties. If you prefer a shower, try using a lavender-scented body wash or a loofah with lavender essential oil to help you relax.
8. Get comfy beddings.
Have you ever wondered how it feels to sleep on a cloud? Then invest in some comfy beddings! These include a comfortable mattress, pillows, sheets, and blankets. A good quality bed should provide proper support and comfort. Also, your pillows should be the right firmness and thickness for your sleeping position. Soft sheets and a cozy blanket complete the soporific package. Look for a high thread count and breathable materials like cotton or linen. And don't be afraid to pile on the blankets. Different layers can help you adjust to the temperature and find the perfect level of warmth.
9. Supplement with sleep aids.
If you still keep tossing and turning despite your best efforts, it might be high time to take sleep supplements. Here are some of the most popular ones to check out:
a. Melatonin - The brain releases this hormone at night to regulate sleep and wake cycles.
b. Valerian root - A flowering plant, valerian root has been used for ages to calm the mind and promote sleep.
c. Passionflower - This climbing vine helps alleviate anxiety and insomnia.
Before taking any sleep supplements, consult your healthcare professional as a safety precaution. It's also important to follow the recommended dosage. Finally, avoid taking them with alcohol or other sedative medications.
So, that's a wrap on our guide to better sleep! With these top tips, you'll be snoozing like a champ in no time. Remember, a good night's rest starts with consistency, so set a bedtime routine and stick to it. Create a peaceful and inviting bedroom environment, and remember to invest in comfy beddings. And let's not forget about the power of relaxation techniques to help hush the mind and calm the body before bed. Pretty soon, you'll enjoy high-quality sleep every night and wake up refreshed and rejuvenated each morning!