We have all heard that sleep is important. But why? And how do we improve our quality of sleep? The “why“ is that when we sleep, our brain and our body are able to regenerate and heal, thus allowing us to function optimally. When we do not get enough sleep, it can affect how we function physically as well as mentally. Lack of sleep can even lead to increased pain sensation and irritability. Here are five tips for sleeping better every night.
1. Decrease Screen Time Early in the Evening.
Looking at our phone, computer, or TV before bed can actually make our brain decide that it’s not time to go to sleep yet. It is recommended to shut off the screens at least an hour before bedtime to give your brain the signals to start to calm down and sleep.
2. Meditation or Relaxation Exercise Before Bed.
Some simple meditation, relaxation, or breathing exercises before bed can help to calm down our nervous system to allow us to get tired, go to sleep and start sleeping better. These can be performed while laying in bed to help us sleep, as well as performed during the night if we wake up and need to fall back asleep.
3. Start an Evening Sleep Routine.
The phrase “sleep hygiene” relates to our routines related to getting a good night sleep. A few examples of this are: turning down the lights in the evening, having calming tea before bed, or going to sleep at a set time each night. This routine signals your body that the day is winding down and it is almost time to sleep.
4. Massage Therapy.
Certain massage techniques, such as effleurage massage, can help to enhance the quality of sleep by getting our body and brain relaxed for bedtime. Booking a massage in the evening can be an excellent way to aid in a good night’s sleep.
5. Cut back on caffeine.
Decreasing one’s caffeine intake can help greatly with being able to fall asleep at a reasonable time. Often, it is recommended to drink coffee before noon and limit it to just one cup a day.
All of these tips can help you get on the path of sleeping better each night!