Here’s How You Can Get Your Best Sleep
Need some sleep tips to help you snooze? If you find getting enough ZZZs is difficult, you’re not alone. According to sleep statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, roughly 35 percent of Americans are getting less than the recommended seven hours each night. In fact, Americans rank 10th worldwide in getting the recommended 7-8 hours (in case you’re wondering, the Netherlands is in the first place, here’s why).
So if getting more sleep is on your 2018 goals list but falling asleep is tricky for you, or if you simply don’t suspect you’re getting enough of the deep sleep your body needs, consider these tips and home remedies for sleep to help you sleep through the night.
11 Simple Sleep Tips To Help You Snooze Through The Night
Invite the light
Fumbling for the alarm in a pitch-black room is actually shocking to your system. Instead of abruptly jarring yourself out of sleep, consider a gentler approach: opening the blinds to wake naturally with the sun. Light shifts your body out of sleep mode by elevating cortisol levels and suppressing melatonin. Need to be up before sunrise? Consider a sunrise alarm.
Make the bed
If you often feel bested by bedtime, your bed may be a haven for negative juju. Simply making your bed in the morning can help bedtime feel more inviting and set the mood for a better night’s sleep.
Feeling groggy in the morning? Getting outside is the best way to wake up your circadian clock. Go for a morning stroll and the natural boost from the sun may help you kick your coffee habit.
Say adios to caffeine to improve sleep
You don’t have to say goodbye for good but aim for a caffeine cut-off time. Caffeine can linger in your system for a long time – for up to six hours depending on how you metabolize it. Cutting caffeine (yes, that means caffeinated tea) by noon is a safe bet for making sure it’s out of your system when it’s time to hit the hay.
Welcome the 3:00 p.m. slump
Find your energy levels waning around 3:00 p.m.? Rather than fighting it, let yourself indulge in a twenty-minute nap. This is the optimal amount of time for getting some rest without falling into a deep sleep that could leave you feeling more groggy.
Give yourself a 3-hour buffer
Eating triggers acid production. If you lay down right after eating, that’s a recipe for experiencing acid reflux. Instead of eating right before bed, enjoy your last meal 3 hours before bedtime. This will give your body sufficient time to digest.
Mellow with magnesium
Consider popping a magnesium supplement with dinner. In addition to supporting more than 300 biochemical bodily functions including regulating heartbeat and neurotransmitter functions, magnesium is shown to calm the nerves and help you fall asleep. Plus, because there are relatively few side effects of taking magnesium, and because many people are deficient, most health care professionals recommend supplementation.
Ditch the screens before bed
You likely already know this one, and it’s one of the sleep tips we probably all need, but it bears reiterating. Screens emit blue light that suppresses melatonin levels. To help your body begin powering down for bedtime, power down the TV, computer, smartphone and even backlit e-reader at least 90 minutes before bed.
Bring on the carbs
That’s right. A little carby snack before bed can actually help you sleep better. That’s because carbs boost the brain chemicals tryptophan and serotonin which promote sleep. Be careful not to overdo it though since too many carbs before bed can contribute to weight gain. Think, a spoon full of honey.
Take a shower
Taking a shower before bed is a great way to signal to your body that it’s time to downshift. In addition to natural de-stressing and relaxing benefits, going from a warm shower to a cool room naturally drops your body’s temperature which is an internal indicator that it’s time to rest.
Keep it cool during bedtime
Ever woken up in the middle of the night and kicked off your blankets? There’s a reason for that. Your body temp naturally drops when you’re sleeping and a too-hot room or bed can keep you from cooling down. One of the simplest sleep tips is to set the thermostat at around 68°F for optimum sleeping conditions.