Most Americans often mention they don’t feel like they achieve enough sleep or have trouble staying asleep. The average adult needs 7-8 hours of sleep each day. This is a vital component of our lives that is important for mental, physical, emotional, and biological recovery. Proper sleep can ensure: great heart health, a stronger immune system, better memory, increase anerobic performance, a more positive mood and more.
It’s not just about when you go to bed though but the steps you take to ensure you have the best quality of sleep possible. Here are 8 more great tips to help you achieve a proper rest.
Stop drinking earlier in the evening
Drinking before bed may help you fall asleep, but it can severely decrease the quality of your sleep. A 2013 study, “Alcohol and Sleep I: Effects on Normal Sleep” show that the consumption of alcohol can reduce the quality of REM sleep. REM sleep is believed to benefit an individual’s learning, memory, and mood make this stage vital for physical and emotional health.
Eliminate long naps
30 minutes of napping during the day can be a great way to boost your energy but any more than that can start to throw yourself into deeper sleep cycles and throw of your optimal sleep schedule. 30 min or less naps are also shown to enhance brain function and do not disrupt your sleep at night.
Exercise is a great way to stay in shape and burn off energy required for a better nights sleep. Spending as much as 30 minutes each day can help with your sleep cycles. While there is not a lot of understanding how the two corelate with each other, Charlene Gamaldo, M.D. stated “However, we do know that moderate aerobic exercise increases the amount of slow wave sleep you get. Slow wave sleep refers to deep sleep, where the brain and body have a chance to rejuvenate.” So try to get in a little exercise each day even if its just a walk around the neighborhood.
As the light exposure decreases your body naturally releases the hormone melatonin to tell your system its time to fall asleep. Taking a melatonin supplement before bed can help you fall asleep faster, improve the quality of your sleep, and give you more energy the next day. You should start with a low dose and slowly increase as needed 30-60 mins before bed.
Avoid caffeine in the evening
Caffeine is a great stimulate to enhance focus and boost energy and anerobic performance. If you consume caffeine in the evening is can prevent your brain and body from calming down. Try and stop caffeine consumption 6 hours before bed.
Relax before bed
If you go to bed frazzled and stressed you may have a hard time calming down when you try to sleep. Start a nighttime routine 60 mins before bed to calm your mind and body to help you prepare and feel relaxed. Things liker reading, stretching, massage with a partner, meditate, or a body scan can help your body prepare for bed.
Stay away from the bedroom
Pavolv through repeated conditioning of feeding a dog and feeding him. Over time he found that just by ringing a bell he could increase the dog’s salivation response. The same can be said for using the bed room for other things like eating, tv, and work. Try and save the bedroom for sleep and sex so that is what you relate the space to.
Using Essential oils
Aromatherapy can be a great usage for falling asleep. These oils can have effects to help you relax, decrease pain, calm your nervous system and make you sleepy. Some ways to use oils include: mixing with some water in a diffuser, putting a couple drops on your pillow, or mixing with a carrier oil like avocado oil and applying dermally. If applying oil directly with a carrier oil I suggest checking with a professional to make sure the ratios are correct so you do not irritate your skin. Essential oils can be very powerful.
Some essential oils that great for sleep include:
· Sweet Orange Oil
· Lavendar Oil
· Ylang Ylang Oil
· Bergamot Oil
· Chamomile Oil
· Clary Sage Oil
· Valerian Oil
· Sandalwood Oil
· Jasmine Oil
· Peppermint Oil
Learn more about Aromatherapy at Level Up by visiting my Aromatherapy Page.