Getting a good night’s sleep is an extremely important part of maintaining your overall health, but it can be a challenge for many people. Whether the issue is physical pain, a racing mind or another cause, if you struggle to sleep through the night, here are four tips to help you fall asleep more quickly and remain asleep for several hours.
Avoid Electronics Before Bed
One of the biggest contributors to insomnia in modern society is the prevalence of electronic devices. Many people are accustomed to sleeping with their cell phones, tablets or other devices by the bed where they can be easily accessed at any time of night. It’s also common for people to fall asleep watching television or streaming video. The harsh light of the electronics makes it harder to sleep, as does the stimulation that comes from engaging mentally with these devices. Give yourself some time before bed to separate yourself from electronics and decompress.
Be Careful With Your Drinking Habits
Caffeine is a stimulant, so you should try to limit your intake to earlier in the day. If you drink a caffeinated beverage within several hours of bedtime, it is likely to keep you awake. Additionally, you may want to avoid alcohol in the evening because of its effects on the sleep cycle. In general, it’s best to limit drinking anything late in the day, as drinking in the evening often leads to waking up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom. Nighttime snacks are best kept light, and sugar in particular should be avoided.
Keep Active During the Day
How you behave during the day affects how you sleep at night. The more active you are early in the day, the better your chances of sleeping well at the end of it. Do your best to exercise in the morning or early afternoon, and spend as much time outdoors in the sunlight as you can. This will help to ensure that you are tired by the evening and that your body is more in touch with the daily rhythms of nature. While it’s best to exercise with vigor, even a few minutes of mild activity can make a difference. What’s most important, though, is to make a habit out of it and stick to it.
Keep to a Regular Sleep Schedule
In today’s busy world, it can be difficult to prioritize sleep. However, you need to remember its benefits and treat it accordingly. Set a particular time to go to bed and to get up, and stay faithful to it. Even if you aren’t tired, try to go to sleep at your regular bedtime, making sure that your room is darkened and you are comfortable. During the day, resist the temptation to nap or to oversleep. If you live your life fully in daylight hours, it will be much easier for you to fall asleep at night. If you are not used to keeping this kind of consistent schedule, be patient with yourself, understanding that it takes time to establish a routine.