5 Healthy Sleep Habits
Sleep Tight in 2017
The secret to a healthier you in the new year is, of course, healthier sleep. We all probably have one or more “bad” sleeping habits, which may include a range of things from working in bed to working out before bedtime. We know how helpful a healthy night’s sleep can be for you and we want to make health your top priority in the new year. With that goal in mind, you must include healthy sleep. So here’s a list of 5 things you can do that will be easy to help you adopt your new healthy sleep habits.
Get More Than a Wink of Sleep with these Tips
1. Consistent Sleep Schedule: This is an important first step because it sets up the other four steps. Your body needs to get used to going to sleep every night at the same time (and waking up around the same time). That means getting a consistent amount of sleep, which is around 7 hours to help your body truly rest. Each night go to sleep at a time where you know you can get at least 7 hours of sleep and still wake up with time to get through your morning routine. If you’re used to staying up until midnight watching TV but wake up at 6am, you’re doing your body a disservice. Go to sleep an hour earlier and train your body to naturally sleep at that time every night. If you’re the type of person who has a sleep schedule that is random, you’ll want to do your body a favor by winding down each night at the same time. Need to start a new sleep schedule but don’t know how? Everyday Health has “10 Tips to Reset Your Internal Clock.”
2. Use Your Bed For Sleep & Sex ONLY: I think we can all admit that sometimes eating, and curling up watching movies all day in bed has been an enjoyable pastime. According to the Wellness Doctrines “We need to ensure physical (and therefore emotional) separation between the daily grind and our downtime. Overlap between the two, increases the chance we will not be able to tell when we can kick back which, in my experience, has made falling asleep much harder at times.” They’re right. When you create a “sleep and sex” only environment in your bed, by removing all the excess things like your office desk and TV, then you have an emotional attachment with your bedroom being just your sanctuary…the place to unwind and drift off to sleep, instead of a place where you work or play video games causing you stress.
3. Soothing Pre-Sleep Routines: We should all be making it a habit to spend 30 minutes before our scheduled sleep time to wind down from the day. After a long day of work, handling children or pets, or just a busy schedule of running errands, we easily end up going to bed with a lot on our minds. Here are a few pre-sleep routines you can try to help you fall asleep more easily.
• Take a relaxing bath
• Try yoga or other stretches to ease the tension in your body
• Do a relaxing activity such as reading (as long as the activity doesn’t involve the screens from your phone, tablet, or TV)
• Listen to calm, soft, or sensual music
• Drink a relaxing cup of tea, like chamomile or mint
4. Avoid High-intensity exercise: We want you to exercise of course, however high-intensity workouts cause high adrenaline, increased brain activity, and make it difficult for a person to fall asleep, particularly if you’re having trouble falling asleep already. Dr. Stuart Quan, a professor of sleep medicine at Harvard Medical School recommends “you give yourself a few hours between your workout time and bed time to allow your body temperature to cool down to 98.6 degrees, your heart rate to return to its resting place, and your adrenaline levels to lower.” For people who still want to work out but can’t in the morning, there are two options, try lighter workouts before sleep or do high-intensity workouts at least three hours before bedtime.
5. Don’t be a Clock-watcher: With so much on our minds for the following day, weekend or the future in general, it’s no wonder many of us wake up in the middle night only to see what time it is. But that’s a big mistake! The clock is our enemy! Don’t pay attention to it until the alarm goes off. Otherwise awaking at 3:12am and noticing you have a few more hours to sleep (let’s say your alarm is set for 6am) your brain will start rotating rapidly with the list of things you have to do once the alarm goes off. Without even realizing it, you’re tossing and turning for 45 minutes because of all the anxiety over everything that has to get done for that particular day. Notice that when you don’t realize what time it is, you can’t obsess over what has to get done. Having your alarm clock turned around, or in a drawer in your nightstand, will help you to not obsess over what time it is, how much time you have left, and what you have to do with your day.
No Need to Count Sheep
These 5 healthy sleep habits should help you adopt a more positive sleeping experience. Try all five and you’ll find immediate results for insomniacs and people who just have sleep disturbances. What would make your sleep even healthier? Using the SAMINA Sleep System. With a climate-regulating wool pad topper, grounding pad, latex mattress, and an orthopedic flexible slat frame, not to mention comfortable pillows that suit your specific sleep needs, we can put you to sleep healthier, happier and faster than counting sheep!