If you’re finding it harder to get a good night’s sleep, you’re not alone. Thankfully, we’re here to give you our top tips so you have the right routine and environment to wake up well-rested and set up for the day ahead.
Establish a regular bedtime
Establishing a regular bedtime means that you get regular sleep as it programmes your brain and body clock to get used to a regular amount of sleep each night.
The majority of adults require roughly six to nine hours of sleep each night and, using this as a guide, you can work backwards from when you need to wake up to determine when it’s bedtime.
An important part of your regular sleeping schedule is waking up at the same time every day, this will help to adjust your body clock so that you get used to a set routine every day.
Wind down & prepare for bedtime
Preparing for bedtime and winding down is a really important part of your routine, there are loads of ways that you can relax ready for sleep:
1. Settle into a warm bath or shower
This helps your body to relax as it helps your body to reach a temperature that is ideal for rest. You can make it, even more, relaxing with some bubble bath, bath bombs or aromatherapy – treating yourself to soothing smells that help you unwind.
2. Get ready for the next day
Once you’ve managed to unwind with a bath or shower, organise the next day by writing a ‘to do’ list. This helps you to clear your mind of any distractions and takes the pressure off the next morning as you know exactly what you need to do. The routine of sitting down to get organised is also beneficial as it will soon become part of your bedtime schedule.
3. Relax with some light movement
Light, simple stretches or even yoga stretches will help to relax your muscles in preparation for sleep. Don’t do any vigorous exercise as this will have the opposite effect and will make you feel more awake.
4. Unwind with calming music
Music affects us all. When you hear your favourite song you get a rush of pleasure. But, the right music has a powerful impact on how your body gets ready for sleep. Music can influence your breathing rate, heart rate and even triggers the release of hormones.
Putting on relaxing music or even white noise can help calm your body by reducing the stress of the day.
5. Read as part of your bedtime routine
Many people read in bed as part of their daily routine and for good reason – it really does work.
Reading or listing to the radio, or even an audiobook or podcast serve as calming distractions that relax your mind – perfect for bedtime.
6. Take your favourite drink to bed with you
If your routine incorporates reading or listing to music in bed, then take your favourite caffeine-free drink with you as part of your routine.
Warm milk, herbal teas and Horlicks have been trusted family favourites for decades.
A warm drink in bed raises then lowers your body temperature which supports a good night’s sleep.
7. Crucially… avoid screens!
Screens are everywhere and, whether it’s your mobile phone, tablet or TV we guarantee that you’ve got them in your bedroom. It’s vital to a good night’s sleep that you avoid your screens around bedtime.
Firstly, screens are designed to keep your mind active and engaged. Phones and TV’s provide us with information and entertain us; neither of which are very helpful when trying to switch off for bedtime.
Secondly, the blue light that comes from phones and TV’s inhibits your ability to produce melatonin, the hormone that makes you feel sleepy. Your body uses light and dark to determine your sleep/wake cycle. So, by constantly looking at a blue light source such as your screen – you inhibit your body’s ability to feel tired.
Make your bedroom suitable for the perfect night's sleep
To help support good sleep, your bedroom should be a relaxing environment where you go specifically to sleep. The more you do in your bedroom such as watching TV, playing on electronic gadgets or even working – the less your body thinks of it as a relaxing place to unwind.
If you can, keep your bedroom just for sleeping and make sure it’s dark, quiet, tidy and slightly cool (ideally at a temperature of 18C to 24C) – all these factors have an impact on you associate your bedroom.
Support for you & yours…
Here at Costcutter, we want to give everyone the support they need – particularly at a time when everyone could use a helping hand.
That’s why we’re committed to providing you with handy hints and tips for everything from cooking to keeping the kids entertained.
Be sure to check out our social media, website and blog for all the latest from Costcutter.