Getting a good night’s sleep can, on occasion, be a surprisingly difficult thing to accomplish. Everyone’s got their own strategy for getting the largest possible amount of shuteye every day, but there are a few things that absolutely must be in place to ensure a restful night.
1. Replace old, sagging mattresses
One of the most common causes of a restless night is having a bad bed. Old mattresses can sag or distort, making them both uncomfortable and unsupportive of your body while you lie on them. As a rule of thumb, it’s a good idea to replace your mattress once every five to ten years. Your body will give you a good indication of when it’s time to replace your mattress – if you wake up with aches or sore muscles, it may mean your mattress isn’t supporting your weight properly. When looking to purchase a new mattress, speak to a specialty retailer like Sleepy’s. Retailers like this are experts in finding a mattress that meets all your needs and helps you get a more restful sleep.
2. Eat well, exercise more
Your habits during the day can have an adverse effect on your sleeping patterns. The hours prior to hitting the sack are especially crucial in making sure you have a good night’s rest. Try to avoid having a massive dinner if you plan to go to bed within one to two hours. Especially fatty foods require your body to work extra hard during digestion and that process can keep you awake. Having a nightcap may knock you out faster but it reduces your ability to stay asleep, meaning you’ll be up and down all night. The same thinking applies to caffeine – try cutting back on your total consumption or, even better, eliminating any further intake after lunch. Hitting the gym is a great way to up the chances of having a good night’s sleep. You don’t have to commit to an insane bodybuilder workout either – 20-30 minutes of regular exercise in a day is all you need.
3. Create a bedtime routine
Making the effort to properly unwind for the day before going to bed is another great way to ensure a better sleep. Minimise light in the room as much as possible – that means turning off TVs and computers, putting your phone facedown and covering the windows with heavy blinds. If these things don’t work for you, try using a sleeping mask to completely block out all light. Avoid reading on a backlit tablet or phone before bed if you can. Use a non-backlit e-reader instead. Blasting light into your eyes only wakes you up. It’s also a good idea to keep your room cool – studies have shown that the optimal temperature for sleeping in is 18°C/65°F.
These are just three ways to better ensure a good night’s rest – there are so many other examples and tips out there. What are your favourite ways to get to sleep? Sound off in the comments below!