Getting a good night’s sleep can directly affect our physical and mental health in a number of different ways. It helps us maintain a healthy weight, keeps our immune system in tip top condition and allows us to function properly during the day time. The quality and length of your sleep can have an effect on all aspects of your life, which is why it is so crucial that we make the adjustments to our home and lifestyle in order to sleep more peacefully each night.
Being able to have our daily quota of ZZZ’s can sometimes feel like an impossible challenge when you are stressed out at work and you always wake up in the middle of the night unable to fall back to sleep. Most of the time the biggest cause of our sleeping issues are bad habits in our daily lives. These habits will affect the way we sleep and the way our body is able to recover and restore itself for the day ahead and directly affect our immune system, brain function and weight.
Keep In Sync With Your Body Clock
If you really want to be able to have the best night’s sleep you can, you need to take measures to make sure you are waking up around the same time each morning and going to sleep at the same time too. Our body has a biological clock which keeps us functioning throughout the day but also helps us to know when we need to rest and when we should get up and move around. Having a morning and evening bedtime routine can help you maintain that energised feel and make you feel much more positive for the day ahead.
There will of course be exceptions to the rule where you will end up going to sleep later than normal or waking up later at the weekend, and this is fine every so often- just try not to make it a habit.
Also, if you ever find that you have a large meal and end up in a bit of a food coma, fight the urge to fall asleep and get up off your seat and do something else. If you don’t it will disrupt your sleeping pattern and confuse your body.
You may have heard of the hormone melatonin: it is a hormone which is controlled by light as can help to maintain your sleeping cycle. Melatonin is secreted from your brain if large quantities when it is dark, making you feel ready for bed- this is why it is important to try and control your exposure to light during the day.
During the day, you can take advantage of the fact that the light will make you feel awake by stepping outside into the morning sun for your morning brew or for a brisk walk at your local park. Getting out into the sun in the morning will reduce the amount of melatonin in your body and make you feel bright, energised and ready to take on the day with full force.
At night, you can do the opposite to this to help you relax and feel ready for bed. Rather than having the main light turned on in your living room; opt for a small light and some candles to create ambience. You can of course watch the TV in the evening, but try your best to avoid it an hour before you go to sleep. The same applies to any other technology with bright screens such as mobile phones and tablets. Switch them off and get yourself into a cosy, comfortable state of mind ready for bed.
When you are getting ready for bed- you want your bedroom to be the perfect place to get that great night’s sleep. Invest in the best mattresses and pillows for extra comfort, opt for black out curtains to block any light and only turn on the side lamp so that you can see what you are doing before you get into bed.
Exercise During The Day
It is a fact that people who exert themselves physically during the day are much more tired in the evenings and are able to get a better quality sleep. The more your exercise during the day, the more tired you will be at night and the better night’s sleep you will get. It’s a simple way of thinking about it and it can be the perfect way to motivate yourself to get out and move your body throughout the week.