Do you have trouble sleeping?
Do you find it hard to fall asleep or stay asleep?
When we don’t get enough sleep it affects every aspect of our day. We are tired and cranky, not as productive as we could be, more anxious and our bodies are not regenerating like they should as sleep is a really important part of being healthy.
I am going to give you some useful practical tips for a good nights sleep.
- Put down the phone! If you really can’t put down the phone, think about using a blue light filter blocker on your phone in the evenings. Using your phone in bed tricks your brain into thinking its still daytime it messes with your circadian rhythm which reduces your melatonin which stops you sleeping. Some phones have a filter in the settings, you can download an app or buy blue light block glasses. Choose wisely the content you watch before bed too.
- Watch your caffeine intake. I often have clients tell me they cant sleep, then thye tell me they drink 6 coffees a day and drink it in the evening. Sure how could you sleep with that much caffeine in your system! Be honest with yourself. Hey, I love coffee too but its best to stop drinking it for up to 6-8 hours before bed if you’re not a great sleeper.
- Get some fresh air at some point during the day. Walking is great even a 10 minute walk is better than none.If you are not into exercise then just stretch out your body really simply put your arms above your head and reach to the sky, side bend a few times. If you do exercise don’t do it in the 2 hours before bed.
- Have a nice warm bath or shower not too hot or even just bathe your feet an hour to 90 mins before bed to relax your mind and body get your bed clothes on after and begin to relax . Make it a routine.
- Stop and sit down at least an hour or two before going to bed. If you are running around cleaning, sorting or working on a laptop, stop and unwind before going to bed. This could be watching T.V.(nothing violent before bed) reading, on your phone,listen to a podcast, journaling whatever but just let your mind and body wind down. Try a chamomile tea or herbal sleep tea, yes some are horrible but some are lovely.
- Create a calm bedtime routine. It doesn’t have to be a long routine. Even 10 minutes before bed can really help. Things like washing and moisturising your face, moisturising your hands, take your time and really rub the cream into your hands, applying a face oil and massaging it in, paying particular attention to your temples and center of your forehead in a slow circular motion. This calms the senses and prepares the body for sleep.
- Use essential oils, in a burner, diffuser, in a candle, on a tissue under your pillow, a pillow spray, in your bath(dilute in milk first). Lavender is the most well know oil to help with sleep, if you don’t like the smell of lavender try mix it with orange which is also sedating, chamomile, bergamot, sweet marjoram are all beneficial for sleep. If using a diffuser, spray or burner do it an hour or two before bed it can be part of your wind down time.
- Read a book in bed its a great way to totally switch off. If you don’t read how about an audible book or a podcast. Try a meditation app or you tube is free. Start with 5 minutes and go from there.
- Try a Magnesium supplement, glycine is bes., Magnesium is needed for over 300 enzymes in the body. It has a calming effect on the brain so can help with anxiety and sleep, it can also help with muscle ache and restless legs which is often worse at night.
- Finally if you cant sleep don’t lie there twisting and turning,with your mind racing,its a lonely place awake at night so get up, out of bed. Don’t turn on all the lights keep them dimmed. Make a warm drink, hot milk, caffeine free coffee or tea, herbal tea whatever. Read, sit and relax, put on some relaxing music, chill out for even 20/30 minutes but don’t go on your phone then go back to bed and hopefully nod off.