10 Tips for a Better Night's Sleep
We've all had one of those days where we feel crabby, moody, irritable or just plain tired & we
know what is causing it – a bad night's sleep. However, despite knowing the cause of our
tiredness, it is frustrating to know that there isn't a quick fix and we begin to worry & fixate on
the effects of another poor night's sleep.
So while there is no speedy solution to your sleep problems, there are certain lifestyle tips that can
make a real difference to your nights in bed – here are our top 10 tips for a better night's sleep.
1. Get Comfortable & Unwind
If you worry about falling asleep before bedtime, you
will almost certainly not get a great night's sleep. So
you need to get comfortable on the sofa or in you
favourite chair and unwind (let your worries float
away). Watch your favourite TV show, read, play with
the kids, do whatever makes you feel most relaxed.
2. Cut Down on Caffeine
Coffee first thing in the morning is great, it helps to set
you up for the busy day ahead. But if you are trying to
nod off to sleep, coffee is the one thing you should
definitely avoid. Caffeine influences the deeper stages
of sleep and can ruin your night's sleep – try to avoid
caffeine after 1pm.
3. Regularly Exercise at the Right Time
Regular exercise has been proven to improve the
quality of sleep, as long as you don't work out too
close to your bedtime. You might feel tired after
strenuous exercise, but a work out too close to bed
time, can give you a new burst of energy that could
keep you awake well into the night. So make sure you
have a regular exercise strategy, but never 3 or 4
hours before you hit the pillow.
4. Create a Bedtime Ritual
Getting into a set routine and having a bedtime
ritual is a great way to calm yourself down and quiet
your mind. Pick a low-key activity to do every night
before bedtime, so that your body gets used to the
activity and associates it with going to sleep. One
example is to tidy your bedroom – pick up any
clutter, sort out the laundry basket, neaten up the
book shelf, plump the pillows or reapply the bedding
to your memory foam mattress.
5. Dim the Lights
A few hours before bed, make your way round your
home and dim the lights. If you had the bright ceiling
lights on, turn them off and put on a nearby lamp, don't
leave the hall lights on, or if you have dimmer
switches, turn the lighting down slightly every hour, to
get your brain in the mood for sleep.
6. Eat Right at Night
Eating large or spicy meals can cause indigestion or
intestinal discomfort, which can make it hard to fall
asleep. If you do feel peckish late at night, try a light
snack like cereal, crackers or milk 45 minutes before
you climb on to your mattress.
7. Neutralise Noise
When you're trying to drift off to sleep, even the most
subtle of noises can cause your brain to become more
alert. A dripping tap, a barking dog, a snoring partner
or a noisy dishwasher. If you can't block these sounds
out try to neutralise the noise with a 'white noise'
machine which will cover up any noises and soothe
you to sleep.
8. Stick to a Sleep Schedule
Creating and sticking to a sleep schedule is a great
concept to incorporate into your life. If you go to bed
and wake up at the same time everyday (including
weekends) you will help to regulate your body clock
and subsequently enjoy a more regular sleep pattern,
that stretches right through the night.
9. Limit Day Time Naps
If you find it difficult to fall asleep at night, try to avoid
daytime naps at all costs (especially during the
afternoon). Any sleep or nap within eight hours of
going to bed can have a detrimental effect on your
night's peaceful rest.
10. Block the Clock
Anxiously glancing at your clock and filling yourself
with dread as the minutes slowly tick by, is not helping
anyone. If you're a clock watcher that worries, all you
need to do is turn your clock around or put it in a draw
– by simply taking away the temptation to look, you
can help yourself to a worry free night's sleep.
Sleep is an incredibly crucial part of our everyday lives. You may be lucky enough to sleep
perfectly every night, but if you're one of the many many people who struggle to get a good
night's sleep on their mattresses, the 10 tips above could make all the difference.