To get the best possible nights sleep a good quality bed suited to your comfort preference is vital. There are however many other contributors to making the most of those precious hours of rest.
An urge to move your legs, snoring, and a burning pain in your stomach, chest, or throat are symptoms of three common sleep disrupters. restless legs syndrome, sleep apnea, and gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. If these symptoms are keeping you up at night see your doctor for an evaluation.
“Rituals help signal the body and mind that it’s coming to be time for sleep,” explains Dr. Carlson. Drink a glass of warm milk. Take a bath. Or listen to calming music to unwind before bed.
Going for a brisk daily walk won’t just trim you down, it will also keep you up less often at night. Exercise boosts the effect of natural sleep hormones such as melatonin.
The bills are piling up and your to-do list is a mile long. Daytime worries can bubble to the surface at night. “Stress is a stimulus. It activates the fight-or-flight hormones that work against sleep,” Dr. Carlson says. Give yourself time to wind down before bed. ” To relax, try deep breathing exercises.
Make sure your bedroom is as comfortable as possible. Ideally you want “a quiet, dark, cool environment,” Dr. Carlson says. “All of these things promote sleep onset.”
A grumbling stomach can be distracting enough to keep you awake, but so can an overly full belly. Avoid eating a big meal within two to three hours of bedtime. If you’re hungry right before bed, eat a small healthy snack to satisfy you until breakfast.
If you have a snack before bed avoid wine and chocolate. Chocolate contains caffeine, which is a stimulant. Alcohol has a similar effect. “People thinks it makes them a little sleepy, but it’s actually a stimulant and it disrupting sleep,” Dr. Carlson says.
Don’t use your bed as an office for answering phone calls and responding to emails. Also avoid watching late-night TV there. “The bed needs to be a stimulus for sleeping, not for wakefulness,” Dr. Carlson advises. Reserve your bed for sleep.