Treat Your Bedroom Like Your Sanctuary
It’s important to make your bedroom a calming place that you can call your sanctuary. Keep in mind, however, that means it should feel like a nice, quiet place you can go to after a busy day. Draw the curtains, change the sheets, and try spraying a pillow fragrance like lavender. Refrain from any activities besides sleeping in your bed. If you can’t sleep, go into another room and crack open a book.
Light Stretching or Yoga
Before bed is the ideal time for some relaxation techniques. DVR a calming yoga series and switch it on an hour before bedtime. If you can get into a bedroom routine, that would be ideal. Calm your mind, leave your tensions for another day, and think about all the things you accomplished in the day. You can also try meditation or breathing exercises.
Go to Sleep at the Same Time
It’s important to rise and go to bed at the same time every day. This will help your body develop it’s on rhythm for when it’s time to sleep and wake. Sleeping and waking at the same time will actually help your body’s internal clock, the circadian rhythm to stay in synch and ultimately help you get better sleep.
Limit Your Caffeine Intake
Limit yourself to just one cup of caffeinated coffee at breakfast, or drink decaf. Too much caffeine in the morning can stay with you until bedtime. (If you’re used to drinking several cups of coffee a day, wean yourself off it gradually over a few weeks.)
Foods to Avoid Before Bed
Definitely avoid drinking caffeinated tea, coffee, and soda, before bed. You may want to avoid a heavy meal as well as alcohol if you are looking to get some good zzz’s. You don’t want to be hungry, however, eat a well-balanced meal in the early evening that is not too heavy.
Go For A Walk
A brisk 30-minute walk can make you feel refreshed and ready for a good night’s sleep better. It will help digest your dinner and make you tired.
Turn off Your Screens
Nighttime is a tempting time to turn on your TV, computer, cell phone, and tablet. These devices emit blue light, which is known to trick your mind into thinking it’s still day time. Try to stop these activities at least two hours before bedtime. There are also several things you can try such as wearing glasses that block blue light, download apps that block blue light on your laptop, computer or smartphone.
- Lighting Research Center, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Figueiro, Wood B, Plitnick B, Rea MS. The impact of light from computer monitors on melatonin levels in college students. Neuro Endocrinol Lett. 2011;32(2):158-63. Retrieved September 27, 2019, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21552190
2. Department of Medicine, University of Chicago. Impact of sleep and sleep loss on neuroendocrine and metabolic function. Van Cauter E, Holmback U, Knutson K, Leproult R, Miller A, Nedeltcheva A, Pannain S, Penev P, Tasali E, Spiegel K. Retrieved September 26, 2019, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17308390
3. J Am Geriatr Soc. 1993 Aug;41(8):829-36. Department of Psychiatry, Cornell University Medical CollegeAlleviation of sleep maintenance insomnia with timed exposure to bright light. Campbell SS, Dawson D, Anderson MW. Retrieved September 26, 2019, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8340561