If you want to stay healthy, good sleeping habits is an important catalyst.
The CDC reports that more than one-third of Americans are not getting the required amount of sleep at night.
Also, a study published in the Sleep Journal shows a significant increase in the number of people getting less than six hours of sleep at night over the past 40 years.
Lack of sleep predisposes us to several health issues.
It is important to adopt good sleeping habits to sleep better at night and wake up refreshed in the morning.
Here are 10 of the best sleeping habits that will help you sleep better at night.
1. Turn off electronic devices before going to bed
Electronic devices such as phones, PCs, and Televisions emit blue light. This blue light can significantly reduce the melatonin levels in your body.
Melatonin is a crucial chemical in the sleep/wake cycle. It becomes more difficult to sleep when melatonin levels are low.
According to researchers at the University Pennsylvania School of Medicine, watching TV before bed can make you chronically sleep-deprived.
The research showed that people who often watch TV before bed tend to go against their biological signs.
The electronic devices keep your brain alert and make it harder to fall asleep.
Turning off your TV and other mobile devices some hours before bed can ensure you a more restful night.
Exercising can help develop some healthy sleeping habits. Exercises get you physically tired, and all you want to do is get into bed and sleep.
The research shows that aerobic exercise reduced insomnia symptoms significantly in a group of adults.
You don’t have to hit the gym before getting a good night’s sleep. Some regular indoor exercises will go a long way to improve your sleep quality.
3. Manage stress
Therefore, you should take some time to manage the daily worries that could keep you awake at the end of the day.
Add some relaxing activities to your routine, and try as much as possible to make those activities void of technology.
Reading, taking a bath, or talking to a loved one are good ways of relaxing after a long day.
Sleeping after such activities may guarantee that you have a good night’s rest and wake up well-rested.
4. Drink tea before bed
Chamomile tea is one of the best traditional sedatives that could help you get better sleep.
The key to sleeping better at night may be as simple as grabbing a cup of chamomile tea in the evening.
One study published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing shows that new mothers who started drinking chamomile tea had fewer sleep deprivation effects than those who didn’t take the tea.
Another 2017 study found that chamomile extract improved sleep quality and daily performance of older adults.
So, you might be looking to add this tea to your bedtime routine for a better night’s sleep.
Other teas that could also help include Valerian root tea, lemon balm tea, and golden milk tea.
5. Avoid cigarette and alcohol
If you have a habit of ending the day with a cigarette, that may cause your lack of adequate sleep.
The American College of Chest Physicians linked smoking with sleep problems.
The issues experienced are a result of the withdrawal process undertaken by the body when you sleep.
Skipping smokes before sleeping or quitting them completely will help improve your general health.
Furthermore, alcohol can leave a person sleep-deprived. According to research, consuming alcohol before sleep reduces REM sleep.
Thus, even if you feel like you’ve had enough sleep, you are not likely to wake up refreshed in the morning.
You should, therefore, avoid drinking alcohol before going to bed.
6. Choose the right sleep environment
A cool, quiet room with low light will help you fall asleep faster. Such a sleep environment will also help keep you asleep for the required period.
Sleep on a comfortable mattress, have comfortable pillows and bed linens. It is often easier to sleep well while being comfortable.
A pair of earplugs may come in handy if your environment tends to get noisy. A room temperature between 60°F (16°C) and 66°F is optimal to get the best sleep.
You may also want to use blackout curtains or an eye mask if your bedroom has too much light.
It is necessary to sleep in a dark environment because it increases melatonin levels, making you sleep easily.
7. Stretch before sleeping
After a long day, most people always find it easier to get something to eat and jump straight to bed.
Having a good stretch at the end of the day may be your key to getting better sleep at night.
According to research published in the Journal of Physiotherapy, stretching before sleep reduced nighttime leg cramps significantly.
This way, you can potentially get a better night’s sleep that is free from pain.
8. Limit your afternoon naps
The longer you stay awake, the stronger your drive to want to go to bed. Our sleep drive is moved by the amount of time we stay remain awake.
Taking a nap during the day reduces our drive to sleep later at night.
Excessive daytime sleepiness and desire to nap may make you prone to incessant wakes during the night.
If you must take a nap, try to keep it to 30 minutes or less. The extent to which napping affects sleep pattern is still not clear, but it surely does.
9. Eat the right foods
You should adopt a healthy eating habit that helps you sleep better at night. Foods like turkey and banana have sleep-inducing effects.
They contain an amino acid – tryptophan, that converts to serotonin to offer powerful sleep induction.
This chemical also helps give you a feeling of calmness and relaxation.
So, you can eat some roasted turkey and a vegetable for your main meal. Then, have some banana and peanut butter as a dessert.
You’ll be amazed at how fast you’ll nod off after such a meal.
More so, the sleep-inducing effect of banana was confirmed by researchers at Airlangga University.
10. Be consistent with your bedtime routine
Doing the same right thing every night helps you to develop the best sleeping habit.
Your sleeping habit will determine how well your sleep will be in the long run.
A study published in the Sleep journal shows that people who had consistent bedtime routines had improved sleep.
Therefore, you should create a calm bedtime routine and stay true to it. This way, your body can easily recognize when it’s bedtime.
The key to getting a better night’s sleep is having healthy sleep habits and sleep hygiene.
Your activities during the day and around bedtime have profound impacts on the quality of sleep you get.
Try out the tips given above to fall and stay asleep easier. Stick to a good bedtime routine, and you’ll get better results.
Be sure to follow up with your doctor if you keep having a problem sleeping.