Having trouble sleeping at night has long-term consequences-it can affect your work, concentration, and interactions with other people. This article will provide you with short-term and long-term solutions for how to get a good night's sleep.
Part 1 of 3: Live Solution
Step 1. Make your room as dark as possible
Light suppresses the production of melatonin, a hormone released by the brain to induce drowsiness. Turning off the lights can increase melatonin production and help you fall asleep.
- Close your bedroom curtains to block out the light from outside.
- If it's still too bright, you can use an eye patch (or cover your eyes with a t-shirt if you don't have one).
Step 2. Keep your room temperature cool, around 15-19°C
Like animals that are in hibernation, our body temperature also drops when we sleep. A cool environment can optimize your body for sleep.
- If you can control the thermostat, make sure you adjust the temperature at night to get a comfortable and cool atmosphere.
- If you don't have air conditioning, or if you don't live alone and can't regulate your room temperature, try opening your windows slightly or using a fan to lower the room temperature if it gets too hot. If it's too cold, you can use a hot water bottle, a heater, or an extra blanket to keep yourself warm.
Step 3. Keep air pollution away
Vehicle noises, noisy neighbors, snoring friends, and barking dogs are just some of the things beyond your control that can keep you awake. Combat annoying noises by muffled them with earplugs, or mute them with other, more soothing sounds.
- Turn on a fan, a sound machine, or tune your radio between stations to create soothing white noise, which can effectively disguise the sounds that stimulate our brains and disrupt sleep.
- If you don't have a fan or a sounding machine, there are plenty of apps with sounds like waterfalls, thunderstorms, or the sound of ocean waves on your phone that you can download.
Step 4. Practice breathing techniques that relax you
Breathing deeply is a quick, simple way to calm your body and relieve anxiety.
Inhale deeply through the nose and exhale through the mouth
Step 5. Write down whatever is bothering you
If you notice that you are having obsessive, circular, or anxious thoughts, try writing them down on a piece of paper.
Step 6. Have a snack, such as a piece of bread
Eating before bed can affect a person differently, but if you're awake from hunger, you may need a snack.
- Foods that contain carbohydrates and tryptophan, such as whole grain bread, turkey, and bananas, can make you sleepy.
- Choose light foods. Spicy or acidic foods can cause indigestion. Fatty foods take longer to digest, and your body's work to digest them can interfere with sleep.
- Stay away from sugar candy or caffeine, which can stimulate your body and keep you awake.
Part 2 of 3: Long Term Solution
Step 1. Make a sleep schedule and stick to it
By sticking to a bedtime routine, you are effectively exercising your body and keeping you from the restless nights you can't sleep.
- Sleep at the same time every day. Choose a time when you start to feel sleepy naturally.
- Get up at the same time every day. Sleeping longer on holidays can be tempting, but it can ruin your sleep schedule and make it harder for you to fall asleep at the right time.
Step 2. Exercise regularly
You only need 20-30 minutes of exercise time each day to see changes in your sleep habits. While regular vigorous exercise is best, any exercise that gets you up and moving can be a good start.
- Choose the right time to exercise. If you run before bed, you may be too tired to sleep. Give your body a few hours to cool off before trying to sleep.
- If you don't have time, try dividing up your workout times throughout the day. In fact, you can get a little exercise by preferring to take the stairs instead of using the elevator.
Step 3. Use your bed only for sleeping and having sex
While lounging in your bed and watching a movie on your laptop is fun and comfortable, it can leave your body confused. Train your brain to go straight into sleep mode when you get into bed.
If you want to do a relaxing activity before bed, like reading or knitting, try doing it in a different room with dim light
Step 4. Try taking over-the-counter medications like Advil pm or unisom
Step 5. Try herbal remedies like valerian root or melatonin
Part 3 of 3: Things to Avoid
Step 1. Avoid bright light, especially light from TV screens, computers, and cell phones
Turning them on seems like a natural habit-you're trying to get some rest, so you turn on the TV, or your phone is charging on your bedside table so you check your phone for what's new on social media. Light from your phone screen or TV can stimulate your brain and disrupt your sleep process.
- Use an alarm clock instead of your cell phone to wake you up in the morning, and put your phone away.
- Keep the TV and computer in another room, not your bedroom.
Step 2. Stop consuming caffeine above 2 pm
The effects of caffeine can be felt for hours after you consume it. So enjoy your coffee in the morning, but try to stop there.
Try drinking decaffeinated milk or tea in the afternoon and evening instead of drinking coffee or soda
Step 3. Quit smoking
Nicotine not only acts as a stimulant and keeps you awake, you will begin to experience strong and disturbing withdrawal symptoms while you sleep.