You probably already know how important sleep is, and how much it can negatively affect your day when you don’t get enough of it. Even the simplest things will seem like insurmountable challenges, and you’ll probably find yourself feeling moody and irritable.
Unfortunately, lack of sleep is far too common a struggle. A third of all adults have trouble sleeping on occasion. If you’re tired of struggling with insomnia, there are ways you can set yourself up for success and make falling asleep less of a battle. However, there are steps you can take to take charge of your sleep health, tips that can help you fall asleep when the clock strikes bedtime. Here are 10 tips for those nights when you’re struggling to doze off.
Tips for Falling Asleep:
- Put down the electronics. As tempting as it is to reach for your phone or watch some TV right before bed, it can be seriously hindering your sleep. The bright light from electronic devices can trick your brain into thinking it’s daytime, throwing off your natural sleep rhythm.
- Darken your bedroom. Making your bedroom completely dark will eliminate distracting lights that could keep you from falling asleep. Unplug devices that have standby lights, get blackout shades for your windows, and turn your clock to the wall or get one that isn’t constantly lit up.
- Wind Down 30 Minutes before Bedtime. Winding down 30 minutes before bedtime is essential for easing yourself quickly to sleep as soon as you get into bed. Give yourself an electronics “curfew” and avoid work or stressful interactions. Some of the ways you can help yourself wind down are by sipping on some caffeine-free herbal tea, drinking a warm cup of milk and honey, taking a calming lavender bath or reading your favorite book. Avoid caffeine for several hours before bedtime. Exercise as early in the day as possible, not at night. Exercising provides many health benefits including better sleep.
- Play white noise. If your brain is on alert at night when you’re trying to fall asleep, any sound you hear is only going to amplify your wakefulness. Obviously, you can’t eliminate all noise like you can eliminate light, but you can drown out noises by playing white noise. Use a CD player, stereo, white noise machine, or an app on your smartphone.
- Snack on Foods that Contain Melatonin. Melatonin is a natural chemical our body produces to help us fall into that deep sleeping phase that is essential for keeping our immune systems healthy and strong. As we get older, melatonin begins to be produced less and less within our bodies, which can create insomnia in some people. The best way to make sure your body receives the proper dose of melatonin it needs is by snacking on melatonin-rich foods just before bedtime. Some foods that naturally contain melatonin are turkey, cherries, strawberries, walnuts, grapes, and tomatoes.
- Keep cool — your bedroom, that is. Studies have shown that you get the best sleep when you keep your bedroom slightly cooler, and heap on the blankets to keep warm. This helps your brain maintain a consistent temperature while you sleep. Another trick is to put socks on before you head to bed, as having cold feet will make it harder to fall asleep. Struggle with the heat? No worries! We have a whole guide for keeping your room cool at night!
- Try deep breathing. Focusing on something other than the ticking clock can help you quiet your mind, and slow, deep breathing is a natural relaxation technique. Count to five with every inhale and exhale and relax your body’s muscles as much as you can.
- Stop checking the clock. Everyone knows how stressful it can be to realize that you’re running out of time to fall asleep, and that can make it even harder to fall asleep. Don’t check the time over and over; simply focus on relaxing your mind and body.
- Picture calming images. Counting sheep might be an old sleep trick, but relaxing images (think rolling waves, a quiet forest, or a zen spa setting) are a much more effective technique.
- Turn down the heat. Studies show that you’ll sleep better in a cooler environment, so turn on a fan and use light, breathable sheets. You’ll be more comfortable and are less likely to spend time tossing and turning.
Cool Down for Better Sleep:
Spring and summers in Arizona are usually anything but cool. When the temperature soars day and night, how can you find the comfort you need for deep, restful sleep?Here are five easy and refreshing ideas that can help you stay cool to get the sleep you need:
- Watch When You Eat to Beat the Heat. Keeping yourself cool at night doesn’t begin when the sun goes down. Your body produces its own heat, which can work against you when you’re trying to fall asleep. Stay hydrated throughout the day and tap into your body’s own cooling system. Instead of three large meals, eat smaller meals more frequently to reduce the heat that is produced by metabolism, and avoid eating large amounts before going to bed.
- Use Fans to Create a Breeze. Turn on the ceiling fan above your bed. The breeze will help you stay cool. You can also combine the ceiling fan with a portable fan on the ground to create a cross breeze to keep you even cooler.
- Lighten Up Your Pajamas and Sheets. It only makes sense to wear loose, comfortable clothing on hot nights. Cotton sleepwear, or forgoing sleepwear period, is a great way to ditch an extra layer of warmth during the night. Take the same approach to your bedding by using light-colored and lightweight sheets that allow your body to breathe and promote ventilation. Mattress360 also stocks bedding made from materials such as bamboo which have been proven to make for a cooler sleeping experience.
- Freeze a Hot Water Bottle. At first, using a hot water bottle to stay cool seems counter-intuitive. However, by getting creative, you can stay cool without cranking the air conditioner. Just fill a hot water bottle with water and freeze it. At night, put it at your feet, creating a cool little area next to your toes. Couple this by taking a cool shower to cool down your body and then going to bed.
- Upgrade Your Mattress and Pillows. Mattress professionals, such as the knowledgeable folks at Mattress360, are quite familiar with the heat produced on an Arizona night. We can help you navigate the new world of cooling foam and gel technology that are used to promote sleep comfort. Come find the perfect mattress to help you sleep. You can also find special pillows that can keep your head cool, even during those triple-digit temperatures.
Upgrade Your Mattress:
Of course, one of the most important things you can do to maximize your sleep health is to ensure that you own a high-quality mattress, a comfortable pillow and an excellent set of sheets. The good news is, you don’t have to spend a ton of money on these sleep essentials – at MATTRESS360, we offer a selection of top-quality sleep products at the best prices in the Valley, and we also have flexible financing options to fit your needs.
Visit our showroom today, or contact us for a fast, easy quote for the sleep products you need. Instead of finding your next mattress store by simply Internet searching, “best mattress prices near me” choose a company that you know you can trust.