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Top 8 Tips for Better Sleep

Top 8 Tips for Better Sleep

How did you sleep last night? If you are anything like millions of people across the country, last night was not a great night – sleep problems affect people of all ages and from all walks of life. If you struggle to fall asleep or stay asleep, take a look at these eight ideas for improving the quality of your rest.

  1. Go to bed at the same time each night (and wake up at the same time each morning.) This helps to reset your body clock so you are getting the optimum amount of quality sleep you need each night. If you get distracted and forget, set an alarm clock to go to bed as well as one for waking up.
  2. An hour before bedtime, start to wind down. Create a soothing and relaxing atmosphere by dimming the lights, turning off the TV, and doing something relaxing like taking a warm bath or reading a book. This signals to your brain that it’s sleep time.
  3. Avoid big, heavy meals right before sleep. You need time to digest your food. Avoid overly spicy or fatty foods late at night, which the body finds more difficult to process.
  4. Don’t choose a nightcap – alcohol makes it more difficult to sleep soundly and contributes to a restless night’s sleep.
  5. Also, don’t drink caffeinated drinks too close to bedtime. Caffeine stays in your system for a surprisingly long time so, to be sure it is not affecting your sleep, you should have your last coffee or tea around lunch time.
  6. In the morning, set the alarm a little later but don’t snooze – hitting the snooze button doesn’t give you any extra quality sleep. You get up later and may even feel more tired than you normally would without the extra snooze.
  7. Make sure your room is the right temperature for sleep – not too hot and not too cold. The room should also be as dark as possible. Even the tiniest amount of light can disrupt your sleep patterns so remove bright digital alarm clocks or wear an eye mask. Your bedroom should also be quiet – try to minimize noise as much as possible but if you can’t do anything about barking dogs or traffic, wear ear plugs.
  8. Change your mattress and/or your pillows if you are waking up stiff, or with an aching back. Mattresses have a good life of around five to 10 years – any older and you will not be benefitting from a good night’s rest.

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