Do you have trouble falling or staying asleep? Different individuals have varying needs when it comes to sleep. Still, most adults should aim to get seven to nine hours of sleep each night.
Age does not affect the required amount of sleep, even though you may find yourself requiring less of it as you get weary and awake at an earlier hour.
Insomnia refers to a range of sleep disorders that are characterized by difficulties falling asleep or staying asleep throughout the night. Some people with the disorder wake up too early and cannot get back to sleep, or they wake up feeling exhausted despite having had enough sleep the night before.
The inability to get a good night’s sleep might make you tired and angry and impair your ability to focus while awake. In addition, long-term exposure can exacerbate pre-existing conditions.
You can enhance your physical and emotional well-being with more restful sleep. By allowing your mind to unwind and rejuvenate, meditation improves your physical health, your immunity, and your emotional well-being. Unfortunately, stress and anxiety might impede a good night’s sleep.
An already existing case of insomnia can be exacerbated by additional stress. However, not getting enough shut-eye might make you feel on edge. As luck would have it, you can take steps to improve the quality of your sleep.
13 Tips For a Better Sleep With Insomnia
Good sleep hygiene consists of practices that promote restful sleep.
Improve your sleep quality by making adjustments to your schedule and environment. However, there is only a silver bullet that will work for some. Finding the strategy that works best for you is the most important thing.
Experimentation is probably going to be the best way for you to find out what kind of sleeping arrangement works best for you.
However, it is equally vital to understand that better sleep hygiene might not cure sleep difficulties or mental health concerns. Therefore, if you’re having difficulties sleeping and aren’t sure how to fix the problem, it’s a good idea to consult a medical or mental health specialist.
Follow these 13 tips to develop healthy sleep habits and have more restful nights.
1. Turn Down The Blue Light
Blue light, a short-frequency kind of light, is emitted by many electronic devices, including smartphones, e-readers, iPads, computers, TVs, and digital clocks, and may be hazardous to the eyes and impair sleep. So if you want a decent night’s sleep, try to avoid using electronic devices as much as possible in the hours leading up to bedtime.
It also helps to use orange-tinted spectacles, which effectively filter out blue light. There are blue-light-blocking apps for computers, tablets, and cell phones. In addition to avoiding blue light in the hours before bed, turning off electronics early in the evening improves the odds of getting quality shut-eye.
If you have a digital clock or other display that can be seen from the bed, cover it up. Curtains with a blackout lining can keep undesirable sunlight out of a room.
2. Recognize And Honor Your Natural Sleep-Wake Cycle
Even on the weekends, sticking to a certain schedule to go to bed and get up can help enhance the quality of your sleep. A healthy sleep-wake cycle is promoted by maintaining a regular sleep regimen. Your body will learn how to wind down more quickly and reach a deeper stage of sleep as a result of this practice.
Getting outside into the early light shortly after waking up is another great strategy to improve your sleep routine. Wake up your brain by exposing it to sunlight sans sunglasses for five to thirty minutes. The generation of melatonin is also stimulated by early morning sun exposure.
3. Exercising Can Lead to Better Sleep
Regular physical activity is one of the best ways to combat insomnia and improve sleep quality. Aerobic exercise, even if only for 10 minutes a day, has been demonstrated to have a major impact on how well people sleep. Activities like cycling, jogging, and swimming are all viable choices.
Staying active can help you sleep better, but not if you do it within three to four hours of going to bed.
Activities that calm the mind and body, such as yoga and tai chi, are ideal for the late afternoon and evening. They are fantastic for relieving stress and helping you have a good night’s sleep by putting you in a more relaxed state.
4. Keep Your Neck in a Neutral Position
One of the most prevalent causes of insomnia is discomfort in the neck. You can reduce your chances of experiencing neck pain and increase your ability to rest comfortably by maintaining a neutral position for both your head and neck.
Verify that your neck is at a “neutral” angle. In other words, your nose should point directly to the middle of your chest.
It would help if you found a cushion that supports a neutral neck position. If you set it too high, you’ll strain your neck looking down. Likewise, if you drop down too far, you’ll strain your neck. Your best bet is a feather or memory foam pillow since they will conform to your head and neck’s unique shape.
If you sleep on your stomach, try to change that. In this position, your head is twisted to the side, which can strain your neck and aggravate existing nerve pain.
5. Use Pillows to Alleviate Low Back Pain
A lack of restful sleep is a common symptom of low back pain. One study found that people with short-term and long-term low back pain had similar sleeping difficulties. However, restlessness was not related to the intensity of pain.
For those who suffer from chronic back pain, lying on their side can help relieve some of the strain placed on the lumbar spine.
Put a pillow in the space between your knees to keep your hips in proper alignment and reduce the strain on your lower back even further. Invest in a mattress that provides adequate back support without adding to your existing discomfort.
The best way to get in and out of bed without straining your back is to use a big, wide-sweeping motion with your legs.
6. Take Short Naps
If you’re feeling sleepy, taking a nap is a wonderful idea, but if you sleep for too long, you may find it difficult to fall asleep at night. Naps of less than 20 minutes in duration are ideal. However, if it lasts any longer, it may prevent you from getting adequate rest at night.
Taking a short nap has improved cognition, emotion, and performance. However, if you want to get the most out of your nap, do it in a quiet, dark room with a comfortable temperature. In a similar vein, if you snooze too late in the day, it may cause you to have trouble sleeping at night.
Sleep inertia, characterized by grogginess and disorientation lasting anywhere from a few minutes to 30 minutes after awakening from sleep, has been linked to naps lasting longer than 10 to 20 minutes.
7. Keep Your Blankets And Mattresses Clean
Lack of sleep is a common symptom of allergy sufferers. Typical symptoms of allergies include coughing, sneezing, and runny or stuffy noses.
Common symptoms of nasal congestion and allergy sufferers include snoring.
Be sure to keep your bedroom free of dust mites and other allergens. Common allergens in bedding include dust mites. Dust-mite-resistant covers with zippers can enclose your mattress, bed frame, and pillows, reducing exposure to these tiny insects.
To prevent the development of mold, mildew, and dust mites, the covers should be hypoallergenic and composed of microfiber. In addition, bedding should be washed weekly in hot water to kill dust mites and changed out frequently.
If you want to reduce exposure to allergens like pet fur and dander, it’s best to keep pets out of bed.
8. Snack Smart
The ability to fall asleep at night may be disrupted by eating certain foods later in the day. For example, indigestion can be brought on by a meal that is too large, too fatty, too fried, or too hot. Some people also find that drinking carbonated beverages or eating citrus fruits sets off their symptoms.
In some cases, heartburn might keep you up at night. Pick light, easily digested snacks like crackers and cheese, fruits, or oatmeal with milk before night to avoid tummy troubles.
To avoid acid reflux while you sleep, try propping yourself up slightly. It’s best to avoid eating within an hour of going to bed so that your stomach has time to settle.
9. Ditch The Alcohol
When consumed in large amounts, alcoholic beverages can cause deceptions. Although it may induce sleepiness at first, it hurts the quality of your slumber. In addition, because it disrupts your natural sleep rhythm, alcohol might make you wake up way too early in the morning.
You may find that alcohol use results in frequent nighttime awakenings. This is because a sleep stage known as rapid eye movement (REM) sleep is inhibited by alcohol use. In addition, the muscles in your body, particularly your throat, become more relaxed, which raises the likelihood that you may snore or experience sleep apnea.
Pick something to sip before bed that won’t make you groggy and hungover in the morning. If you’re having trouble drifting off to sleep at night, try having a cup of chamomile tea or warm milk.
10. Limit Fluid Intake
Although being dehydrated is not desirable, consuming excessive water can cause you to wake up frequently during the night to urinate. It may signify a more serious health problem if you have to get up multiple times during the night to urinate. Get checked by a medical professional.
Reduce or eliminate the need to get up in the middle of the night to use the restroom by cutting back on fluids at least two hours before bedtime. In addition, it’s a good idea to have a nightlight in the hall and the bathroom to find your way without stumbling and waking yourself up.
11. Maintain a Quiet Environment
The peace and quiet of a bedroom can do wonders for falling asleep. Experiencing some level of background noise is to be expected. It’s hard to focus when there’s noise from the street, a barking dog, or a dripping faucet inside.
Earplugs will help block out any outside sounds during the evening and night. When you need to block out annoying noises, a fan or white noise machine can assist. Finally, tend to the home’s various annoyances, such as broken faucets, squeaky doors, and the like.
You should ask your loved ones to stay quiet after dark and to respect your usual sleep ritual.
12. Quit Smoking
Neurotransmitters are molecules in the brain that affect our emotions and our ability to sleep at night. Since nicotine is a stimulant, it may be hard to get to sleep or stay asleep if you regularly use it. Insomnia, daytime dysfunction, and other sleep issues are exacerbated by nicotine, according to studies.
Forget about getting any of that good, rejuvenating REM sleep while smoking. Sleep-related breathing difficulties are exacerbated by smoking. If you want to stop smoking, your doctor can help. With the help of pharmaceuticals and nicotine replacement solutions, you can gradually reduce your nicotine intake and eventually quit smoking.
If you go off the wagon, don’t give up. There are multiple attempts at quitting for many people before they succeed in permanently avoiding nicotine. In addition, the fear of gaining weight after quitting is a real problem for many people.
The best way to combat it is with a healthy diet and regular exercise, which your doctor can recommend.
13. Establish a Nighttime Routine
Reducing stress by engaging in relaxing activities before bed is a great idea. Don’t stay up late working. Avoid anything that can trigger strong emotions, such as distressing chats, scary movies, or exciting books.
If you’re a worrier, keeping a journal can be a helpful way to release your worries. Prepare for sleep by indulging in relaxing activities like a warm bath, soothing music, quiet reflection time, or a good book. Even if you can only take 10 minutes daily to meditate, the effects will be far-reaching.
Get in touch with your healthcare physician if your sleep problems persist. You can anticipate questions regarding your sleep schedule and any problems you’ve been having, as well as a full physical examination and evaluation of your medical records.
A doctor specializing in sleep disorders can identify the problem and recommend lifestyle or therapy changes to help you get better rest. A sleep study is sometimes suggested as a treatment option.
During the study, you will be required to sleep in a lab section that looks like a bedroom. If you have sleep problems, you can get an accurate diagnosis by tracking your brain activity while you sleep.
Frustration is inevitable when you have trouble sleeping or staying asleep. However, if you heed your sleep hygiene, you can implement alterations to your routine that will put you in a better position to rest. In any case, you shouldn’t have to bear the burden of insomnia alone.
It is recommended that you get expert help if you are experiencing difficulties falling or staying asleep. A doctor can help in determining the underlying cause. Then, you can figure out some strategies for dealing with your situation or make some adjustments to get some shut-eye finally.