We would often hear people saying “Have a good night’s sleep!” when someone is about to sleep, but what exactly is “good sleep?” How does one get a good sleep? Sleep experts say that for asleep to be a “good” one, it has to be quality uninterrupted sleep for at least 8 hours. However, due to factors such as diet, lifestyle, medications, health conditions and stress insomnia seems to be inevitable. And while most people could easily overlook sleeplessness, complications such as anxiety, poor memory, and reduced immunity could affect a person’s health and wellness. Looking for ways to overcome insomnia should be done as soon as possible and instead of overlooking the causes; you should use these to come up with efficient and effective strategies to get a good night’s sleep.
A lot of things could easily lead to sleeplessness and unless something is done, sleeplessness could lead to long term medical conditions. Here are some tips to help you beat insomnia for good:
- Review your lifestyle. Look for clues in the activities that you do each day and the various things that you simply cannot live without that are affecting the way you sleep. Once you have identified the factors that cause insomnia, removing these factors will be able to get you a good night’s sleep.
- Identify factors that could affect the way you sleep in the bedroom. If you use this room to work and to do other activities then this could be one of the reasons that are keeping you up. Remove your computer, television and other audio and video equipment; instead associate your bedroom only to two things: sleeping and sex. You will eventually find out that you can have a good night’s sleep when you avoid work in the bedroom.
- Your mattress, as well as your pillows, may also affect the amount of quality sleep you are getting. Old mattresses tend to be lumpy and very uncomfortable and therefore you should consider replacing your mattress once it has lost its springiness and comfort. Do you sleep while you are on your side? A lot of people do especially pregnant women since a side-lying position eases pressure on the abdomen and the back. Using a special pillow for side sleepers could help provide a relaxing sleep and when used by pregnant women, this pilloweases pain and discomfort especially during the third trimester.
- Avoid eating a heavy meal before sleep. Eating a huge meal will only keep you awake and can even lead to acid reflux disease. If you must eat before sleep, choose foods that contain a chemical called tryptophan; this chemical helps stimulate sleep. Foods such as turkey and wheat bread are just two with the highest levels of tryptophan.
- Drink herbal teas. Warm teas made from herbal ingredients such as lavender, cinnamon, and mint have calming and soothing properties that can help induce sleep. Drink a cup just before going to bed. You may also use aromatherapystrategies that can help you fall asleep with the use of scents on your pillowcases and bedsheets or you may place a few drops of oil in your bath.
- Take a warm bath or a warm shower before you sleep. The warm water will soothe pains and discomfort and will ease tired muscles too. Simply soak in the tub for at least 30 minutes but keep the water temperature constant at all times so you can take advantage of this efficient technique.
- Stress and anxiety are two of the top reasons why people tend to sleep less. And most of the reasons that make people anxious are work and finances; you can reduce your worries by placing or “parking” your thoughts on paper or a diary. You are merely keeping them till you can focus on these problems until tomorrow; this has to be done night after night before going to sleep. Place this diary on your nightstand so you will never forget to write your thoughts and plans down.
- Play soft music. Babies sleep with a lullaby so why can’t you? Place soft music with a slow tempo that can help lull yourself to sleep. You may also use a white noise creator like an electric fan to help soothe you and calm you down. Use a CD player or a cradle for your iPod; store slow and soothing songs and play these non-stop till you are able to sleep.
- Exercise using low impact activities like walking or jogging in the evening to help you relax. You can walk your dog, take a stroll outside with your partner or with your family member or you may play with your kids just to release pent up energy. You will find that it is easier to induce sleep when you are tired instead of starting out very awake at night.
- Talk to someone. Sometimes it is easier to fall asleep after you have talked to someone even on the phone. If you are stressed or anxious about anything, you can immediately release tension and stress when you engage in small talk. But of course you should limit yourself to only an hour or so before sleeping.