Tips for Improving Sleep
Getting a good night’s sleep is equally as important as exercise and a balanced diet. Sleep is often neglected, though it is essential for our wellbeing. Poor sleep quality can lead to an increased risk for chronic diseases and depression, and can lower your immune system. Here are some useful tips to help maximize your sleep:
Creating a nightly bedtime routine
1. Give yourself time to wind down by reading, writing, taking a bath, mindfulness medication, or listening to soft music.
2. Create a restful environment. We sleep best in a cool, dark room with minimal noise. Avoid bright lights one to two hours before bedtime. This can promote the production of melatonin in your body to help you sleep more soundly.
3. Disconnect from your iPad, phone, or laptop at least thirty minutes prior to sleep. Avoid watching television as well. These activities keep your brain “wired” and prevent you from winding down.
Optimize your sleep schedule:
1. Set a regular time to wake up each morning. Choosing a standard time will help your body become accustomed to a healthy sleep routine.
2. Try to limit naps as much as possible. If you nap, try to only nap shortly after lunch for a maximum of twenty minutes to avoid hindering your sleep schedule later on.
3. Limit the difference of sleep achieved on the weekends verses weekdays, to help your body stay on a consistent schedule.
4. During the day, try to limit caffeine which is known to cause sleep problems even up to ten hours after consumption.