If you have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, it may be a good idea to make a few simple lifestyle changes. To improve sleep, reduce those behaviors that prevent you from sleeping well while increasing those that improve your sleep.
1. Avoid Consuming Caffeine Before Bedtime
Some people have difficultly falling asleep when they consume too much caffeine close to bedtime especially as people get older. The main sources of caffeine include tea, coffee, chocolate, and soft drinks. Other sources include medications for allergies, colds, appetite suppression, and pain relief.
2. Avoid Alcohol Consumption Too Close to Bedtime
Even though alcohol consumption close to bedtime will allow you to fall asleep quicker, it will disrupt your night’s sleep. Apart from disrupting your night’s sleep, alcohol consumption before bed can lead to breathing problems and jerky arms and legs. People with alcohol problems usually have chronic sleep problems.
3. Relax Before Bed
Stress can lead to sleep deprivation. As such, it is good to relax before bed. To relax before bedtime, try relaxation exercises, listen to claiming music, take a bath or shower, do Sudoku or crosswords, or read a good book. It is also a good idea to avoid using electronics before bedtime as doing so can ruin your sleep. Keep in mind that the blue light emitted by electronic devices can negatively affect your sleep. So, avoid using electronic devices such as phones and TVs at least 30 minutes before bedtime.
4. Exercise a Few Hours Before Bed
It is a good idea to exercise 4-8 hours before going to bed as exercising gives you a burst of energy hence helping you enjoy a good night’s sleep. In fact, research shows that those who exercise on a regular basis 30-60 minutes daily, 3 times a week) have a deeper sleep. If you would like to find out more about recreation and leisure options near where you live, visit your local community center.
5. Follow a Consistent Sleep Schedule
Going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, including weekends will help you enjoy a good night’s sleep. On the other hand, if you go to bed and wake up at different times every day, you’re likely to have difficulty falling asleep. Remember that following a consistent sleep schedule will help your body get into a routine. Make sure that your bed is comfortable and supportive, take a look at these Zinus mattress reviews.
6. Don’t Take a Nap If You Experience Sleep Problems
Naps can be very beneficial, but they are not good for those who experience sleep problems as it interferes with sleep at night. If you have difficulty falling asleep, cut out naps to see if your sleep at night improves. It is good to keep naps short around 30 minutes at most to minimize disruption to your sleep patterns. If you usually feel so tired that you have to take a nap, seek medical advice as it can be a sign of another health problem like a sleep disorder.
7. Don’t Go to Bed When You Are Too Full or Too Hungry
A healthy diet can help you enjoy a good night’s sleep. However, avoid eating a large meal in the 2 hours before going to sleep. If you feel hungry before bedtime, eat a light, healthy snack instead of a large meal.