Sleep: The ten tricks to help you fall asleep fast
Millions of Brits are facing sleepless nights due to pandemic-related stress. Whether you’re worried about losing your job, loved ones who are sick, or not being able to pay the bills, it’s easy to spend all night staring at the ceiling. Don’t worry, sleep experts at The French Bedroom Company have provided ten tips to help you fall asleep fast.
Establish a routine
Go to bed at around the same time each night.
This will help the body’s internal clock recognise when to be alert in the daytime and when sleep is calling at night.
Ditch the devices
Smartphones and tablets need to be kept out of sight when you’re trying to get some shut-eye.
Endless screen time before bedtime, especially among children, is proven to disrupt sleep.
Overstimulating the mind makes it difficult to relax, while the artificial screen glare known as blue light reduces the production of melatonin – the hormone which regulates the sleeping and waking cycle.
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The full body scan
A full body scan is one of many calming exercises that relax the brain.
Systematically scanning every area of the body and noting all the individual sensations from the toes upwards is excellent for releasing tension and de-stressing the mind.
Create the right sleep conditions
You can’t sleep in a hot and bright room, so create the right conditions in the bedroom where possible.
The optimum temperature for sleep is around 18C (64.4F), which during summer is aided by choosing a lower Tog rated duvet of between 2.5 and four.
Investing in black-out blinds also prevents the bright sunlight streaming into the bedroom during long summer evenings.
Limit alcohol and carbs intake
Although many people feel a few tipples before bed will make them feel drowsy and therefore fall asleep easier, it will pave the way for a more disrupted and disturbed sleep in the early hours.
A high-carb meal before bed can have similar consequences.
Yoga, mindfulness and meditation
Exercising before bedtime is a big no, but yoga, mindfulness and meditation provides a relaxing state of mind.
The stretching and calming breathing exercises are perfect for decluttering the brain before the head hits the pillow.
Mindfulness also ensures our state-of-mind is in the here and now, rather than fixated on the jobs that need completing at work in the morning.
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Don’t force it
Clock-watching and putting pressure on yourself to fall asleep can only add to the list of worries that make it difficult to do so.
Paradoxical Intention is the unusual technique of trying to stay awake – slowly shifting the mind away from the anxieties caused by trying too hard to drop off.
Make a list
Note down all the jobs that need accomplishing in the morning before bedtime so they are out of the system when it’s time to sleep.
Work worries whirring through the mind when it’s time to nod off is a recipe for tossing and turning.
Instead, unwind with a relaxing book that is proven to create a restful mind.
Have a caffeine-free evening
Caffeine found in chocolate through to energy drinks is a stimulant which keeps the mind alert when it should be winding down.
Switching to decaf tea and coffee, or even opting for a soothing chamomile tea, is a simple way of quenching the thirst without compromising hours of sleep.
Get rid of dust mites
A proven nightmare for allergy sufferers who want to drift off is the dreaded house dust mite – triggering symptoms such as a blocked nose, repetitive sneezing and even breathing difficulties.
Washing bedding at a temperature of at least 60C (140F) and choosing wooden floors instead of carpet are two ways you can get rid of dust mites.
They multiply rapidly in warm, humid summer conditions, so be smart about how you fashion your bedroom.
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