- by Dr. Lane
Having trouble getting to sleep at night? Insomnia is a condition that many people would say they have experienced in their lives. But is it a serious issue for you? Here are some tips for getting a better night sleep that can help you right away.
- Go to bed and get up at the same time or at least within 30 minutes of your usual time.
- Do not nap longer than 20 minutes during the day.
- Keep your room dark at night: no blue light from clocks, electronics, etc.
- When you get up, uncover your windows to allow light in and if possible get outside into sun light.
- Keep your room cool: Lower than 70 degrees and ideally at 65 degrees.
- Do not use your phone or computer within one hour prior to bed (light emitted affects melatonin).
- Do not exercise vigorously within 2 hours of bed time.
- Consider relaxing herbal teas before bed like chamomile, lemon balm, or sleepy time. Loose leaf options may be more therapeutic.
- Do not eat high glycemic index foods (foods that raise your blood sugar) within 2 hours prior to bed.
- Avoid all caffeine products (coffee, tea, soda, energy drinks, dark chocolate) within 12 hours of bed time.
- Lavender scent sprayed on your pillow can help induce sleep.
- Do not talk about stressful events prior to bed like finances or world events.
- Think of positive things prior to bed such as what you are grateful for or happy memories.
- Add a relaxation technique before bed like progressive muscle relaxation, breathing, visualizations, or meditation.
- If there are noises that bother you consider a noise maker (or free phone apps) that can make ocean sounds or rain sounds to help you relax.
- If you cannot sleep after 20-30 minutes, get out of bed, go to another room and do something boring. Once sleepy, go back to bed.
- If you are not sleeping well do not stress about it. Allow yourself to enjoy time when you have no obligations and realize that your health will be OK even if you do not sleep well that night. Relaxing without stress can also be rejuvenating to your body and mind.
Give these tips a try and if you still feel you need support in your life because it's affecting your sleep, just contact us.