Sleeping is a natural phenomenon that helps our body in several ways. To begin with, it helps our body recover and repair itself after a long day’s wear and tear. Furthermore, several chemical reactions take place in our body while we sleep to enable our major components to refresh themselves before we wake up. However, sometimes it can be a bit difficult to get a good night’s sleep. While there maybe several reasons contributing to that, you should always know how to focus on getting a good sleep at night. It might be a bit tricky at first but you will soon find it significantly beneficial to your health.
Increase Exposure to Bright Light During the Day
The first step to getting better sleep is increasing your exposure to bright light during the day. Your body features a natural time-keeping clock known as the circadian rhythm. It is designed to affect your brain, body, and hormones, etc. With that being said, it helps you stay awake and informs when it is time to sleep. Exposure to bright light during the day helps keep the circadian rhythm healthy. As a result, you get to have better daytime energy and nighttime sleep quality and duration. Several studies have been conducted on people suffering from insomnia and how exposure to bright light can help them sleep. And the studies have found that the sleep duration was increased by 2 hours and efficiency was relatively better by its increase of 80%.
Reduce Blue Light Exposure In the Evening
As mentioned previously, exposure to bright light during the day is beneficial to health. However, exposure to nighttime life has the opposite effect. This is because it tricks your circadian rhythm to remain awake by assuming that it is still daytime outside. As a result, your body slows down the production of melatonin, which helps the body relax and get to sleep.
With that being said, exposure to blue light is one of the biggest reasons behind people not being able to get a good night’s sleep. The reason is that most people before sleeping tend to be using their smartphones for hours that emit blue light. Exposure to blue light tricks our system to think that it is still daytime outside and suddenly we tend to lose our sleep. Therefore, if you plan on using your phone everyday before sleeping, make sure that you use an app or something that reduces the effect of blue light exposure on your sleep.
Don’t Consume Caffeine Late in the Day
Waking up refreshed is crucial to optimum health. Since coffee is one of the most popular drinks amongst people in the world, it is no surprise that the intake of caffeine is experiencing an ever-increasing trend. Although caffeine has, its advantages but you cannot ignore its disadvantages as well. For instance, a single dose can enhance its focus, energy, and sports performance. However, if you were to consume it later in the day, the caffeine will stimulate your nervous system and prevent you from relaxing naturally at night. It is said that caffeine stays in the blood for around 6-8 hours. Therefore, drinking caffeine 6-8 hours before sleeping is not recommended. Stick with decaffeinated coffee if the craving kicks in.
Reduce Irregular or Long Daytime Naps
Although short naps tend to be beneficial to the body, long or irregular naps tend to be unhealthy. If you were to sleep in the daytime, your internal clock becomes confused and does not let you sleep at night. Studies have noted that napping for 30 minutes during the day can help enhance brain function while longer naps can harm health and sleep quality. However, studies also suggest that people who are used to taking regular daytime naps do not experience a decrease in the quality of night sleep.
Try to Sleep and Wake at Consistent Times
The body’s circadian rhythm is designed to function in accordance with the sunrise and sunset. If you were to sleep and wake up at the same time consistently, you are bound to increase both the quality and duration of your sleep. A study conducted on the same subject noted that the individuals who prefer to sleep late at night during the weekend tend to have relatively poor sleep quality. Other studies have concluded that irregular sleep patterns negatively influence your circadian rhythm and levels of melatonin, which helps you relax and put your brain to sleep.
Take a Melatonin Supplement
As mentioned several times previously, melatonin is a compound found in our bodies that helps us relax. People who are suffering from insomnia and irregular sleep patterns are suggested to take melatonin supplements. It is one of the easiest ways to help fall asleep. The best thing about these supplements is that there are no side effects. However, you should not overdo it and only consume them after consulting a doctor. Health experts suggest that you should start with a low dose and observe how your body reacts. Then, increase your consumption gradually depending on the response.
Don’t Drink Alcohol
Studies have found that the consumption of alcohol at night can affect the quality of your sleep. Alcohol has been found to trigger snoring, sleep apnea, and disrupted sleep patterns. Furthermore, it has also been noted that alcohol alters the production of melatonin production, which happens to play a crucial role in the body’s circadian rhythm.
Optimize Your Bedroom Environment
Sleep experts suggest that sometimes it might just be your bedroom environment that is hindering your regular sleeping pattern. There are several things in a room that might prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep. For instance, if your room happens too close to the main road, the passing traffic might disturb your sleep. On the other hand, if your room has many bright lights, it might also result in irregular sleeping patterns. Therefore, make sure that your room is cozy and soft when it comes to the lighting to allow you to sleep better at night.
Sleeping plays an important role in your health. Irregular sleeping patterns might result in several health concerns later down the road. Therefore, follow the sleeping tips mentioned above and make sure that your everyday goodnight sleep is as good as it can be.