6 Tips to Get the Best Sleep of Your Life
Turning the lights off, along with all other devices that could disrupt your rest, not drinking coffee late and lying down in a comfortable bed sometimes just aren’t enough to make you fall asleep.
According to an assistant professor and sleep specialist at the University of Chicago’s Department of Medicine, Kristen L. Knutson, Ph.D., there are some factors that could be affecting your sleep that you’re not even aware of. And since lack of sleep can lead to many conditions, including depression, cardiovascular disease and struggling with weight, it is important to find a way to get enough snooze time every night and wake up rested and refreshed.
With these tips, you’ll be able to get the best sleep ever:
1. Pay attention to what you’re drinking in the afternoon.
It’s not just coffee that can cause trouble when it comes to sleeping, but actually any drink that contains caffeine. That includes tea, as well as most sodas, and even flavored waters. Actually, anything considered as an energy drink or that brings your energy levels up can be the causer of your inability to fall asleep. That is why you should stop drinking anything with such properties after 2 in the afternoon, so that their effect will wear off by the time you go to bed.
2. What you eat for dinner matters.
You have probably noticed that if you eat a burger or some sugary and fatty food before going to bed you can’t really sleep well. However, according to a clinical associate professor at Boston University, Joan Salge Blake, there are certain foods that can improve your sleep, as well as help you fall asleep more easily. If you feel very hungry before bedtime and you simply need to eat something, choose something light, such as fresh vegetables (tomato, cucumber, lettuce, or anything similar) in combination with some chicken breast, and if you’re looking for some extra taste, add some cottage cheese into the mixture. Warm milk with cereal is also a good option to help you fall asleep. Basically any combination of protein and good carbohydrates is fine. But stay away from heavy foods.
3. Keep it cool.
To be able to fall sound asleep, your body needs to cool to a certain temperature, as the director of the University of Michigan Behavioral Sleep Medicine Program, Todd Arnedt, Ph.D. explains. Therefore, don’t take a hot bath, exercise or do anything that makes your temperature rise right before going to sleep. If you get home from work tired and you would really like to relax in the bathtub with bubbles, do it at least an hour before you plan to hit the sac. The same goes for physical activities. Once you let your body cool down, you will sleep like an angel.
4. Set a sleeping schedule.
Going to bed and waking up at different time each day can disrupt your balance and make it more difficult to fall asleep, and cause you to be more tired throughout the day. This is why a schedule is so useful. Go to bed and wake up at the same time each day, and you will soon notice that you’re sleeping better and feeling more rested when you wake up. Even if you come home late after a night out, don’t let yourself sleep in, get up like you would normally. And then try to go to bed earlier that day to make up for the lost sleep.
5. Read something 15 minutes before going to sleep.
When you get home from work it probably takes you a while until you’re able not to think about what worries you and all the problems you have and will encounter. Choose something easy and entertaining (not something heavily intellectual) for bedtime reading, and calm your mind.
6. Get a good bed.
If you’re sleeping on a couch, no wonder you’re tired throughout the day and can’t sleep well. The same goes for a normal, but uncomfortable bed. Remember – you need good quality sleep to be able to function properly during the day, and for that you need a comfortable bed. Consider it a good investment, and don’t try to buy something cheap just so you could save some money. Pick something really good that will last for years and allow yourself some sleeping luxury. It is definitely worth every penny.