If you are having a hard time sleeping, don’t skimp on it for long (more than just a couple of days) or turn sleeping into a competition. It is very important to get a good night’s rest of 7 or 8 hours of sleep at least per day. From time to time, everyone has a hard time sleeping, so don’t worry if you run into a stretch of time where you have sleeping difficulties. Try the following tips to help you return to natural and restful sleep once again.
1. Set and maintain a regular sleeping schedule
You should go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time every morning. If your schedule is disrupted it could result in insomnia. Also, when you sleep in on the weekends that can make it hard for you to wake up on Monday morning at the right time since your sleep cycle is re-set to wake up later. Do not take naps within 8 hours of going to bed for the night.
Try exercising for 20 to 30 minutes per day. Exercising on a daily basis can help you sleep better at night, although working out right before bedtime can interfere with your sleep. To get the maximum benefit, try exercising around 5 to 6 hours before you go to bed. Don’t exercise within two hours of going to bed.
3. Avoid alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine
Avoid consuming drinks with caffeine in them. Caffeine is a stimulant that will keep you awake at night. Caffeine sources include coffee, soft drinks, chocolate, diet drugs, non-herbal teas, and certain pain relievers. Smokers have a tendency to sleep quite lightly and nicotine withdrawal often causes them to wake up early in the mornings. Alcohol can rob you of REM sleep and deep sleep and keep you in lighter sleeping stages. Avoid all of those things for 6 to 8 hours at least before going to bed if you want to get a good night’s rest. Also, do not consume any large meals within two hours of going to bed.
4. Establish a relaxing bedtime ritual for yourself
Reading, a warm, or another type of relaxing ritual can help you fall asleep. Your body can be trained to associate sleep with certain restful activities, so make them part of your bedtime regimen.
5. Sleep until sunrise
If possible, in the morning use a very bright light or wake up to the sun. Sunlight helps the internal biological clock of your body to reset itself every day. It is recommended by sleep experts that people expose themselves to one hour of sunlight in the morning if they are having difficulties sleeping.
6. Don’t stay in bed awake
If you are unable to fall asleep, do not simply lie awake in bed. Instead, do something else, like listening to music, watching television, or reading, until you are tired enough to go to sleep. The anxiety that comes with not being able to fall asleep can result in insomnia. Go back to bed when you start to feel sleepy and avoid sleeping anywhere else other than your own bed.
7. Control your bedroom temperature and environment
Make sure your bedroom stays at a comfortable temperature. Extreme temperatures can prevent you from being able to fall asleep or disrupt your sleep. Whenever possible, make sure you have a quiet, comfortable, dark environment to sleep in. Find the best hybrid mattress for the best night’s sleep. Try not to fall asleep with the radio or television on, since this bad habit can cause you to need to have the radio or TV on any time you are trying to fall asleep.
8. Completely darken your bedroom
According to recent research, a dark bedroom helps you sleep more completely and better each night. It was found in studies that even such small things as the glow from an LED or clock in the bedroom can lower the overall quality of sleep.
9. If your sleeping problems persist, see a doctor
If you are having a hard time falling asleep on a regular basis, and feel tired the next day all the time, you could be a sleeping disorder and you need to see a doctor. Your primary care doctor might be able to assist you, or you can check with a major local hospital for a sleep specialist.