Getting good sleep is one of the foundations of living a healthy life. If you’re not sleeping enough, or the sleep you’re getting low-quality sleep, you’ll run into a whole host of problems. Insufficient sleep can lead to decreased immunity, low energy, and poor mental health. Rather than putting yourself at risk for these ailments, here are three tips to improve the quality of your sleep.
Have a Routine
The first step to getting healthier sleep is to have a routine. Many facts about sleep support that having a routine helps you fall asleep and stay asleep. The first part of your bedtime habit should be a steady bedtime. While you don’t have to go to sleep at the same time down to the minute, you should attempt to hit the hay around the same time every night, say midnight.
Second, have a wind-down setup before bed. Small tasks like showering, brushing your teeth, and setting out your clothes for tomorrow can help your mind transition to a slower, calmer, bedtime state. Additionally, doing the same things before bed every night can train your brain to start releasing melatonin and dopamine when you begin your tasks.
Finally, your routine should include putting your phone away. By shutting the screens off at least an hour before bed, you can help regulate your circadian rhythm, allowing your sleep quality to improve.
Grab a Snack
The second way you can improve the quality of your sleep is by grabbing a snack before bed. While it’s not advisable to eat large meals right before you try to sleep, there are certain foods that can actually help you sleep. Eating some of these as part of your bedtime routine can help you fall asleep faster and sleep deeper.
So what type of snacks should you have? Nuts like sunflower seeds, cashews, and pistachios are high in a molecule called tryptophan. This molecule tells your body to release more melatonin, helping you regulate your sleep cycles.
Poultry is also high in tryptophan, so a turkey and cheese wrap would be a great late-night snack. Pair your wrap with a handful of cashews or pistachios, and you’ll find yourself slipping off into sleep with no issues.
If you’re not much of a snacker, you can include drinks like chamomile tea or tart cherry juice in your bedtime routine. Both of these have magnesium in them, which helps your brain regulate your sleep cycle. Having a cup before bed is proven to improve your rest.
Set the Scene
Finally, you need to set the scene if you want to get high-quality sleep. If you want your rest to be restorative and rejuvenating, you need to be in an environment that supports that. You won’t be able to sleep well if your room is noisy and bright; it simply won’t work. Rather than trying to push through distractions, do your best to make your room optimal for sleep. Turn off any extra lights, reduce or eliminate noise, and prevent any distractions from occurring.
Of course, if you’re a parent or have a job that requires you to be on alert, this may not always be possible. However, you can still set the scene for great rest. The mattress and bedding you sleep on also have an effect on your sleep. Make sure your bed is comfortable and supportive for your joints. Additionally, your bedding should be soft enough and appropriate for the temperature you prefer to sleep at.
If you’re sleeping in an uncomfortable environment, you can’t expect yourself to get good, high-quality sleep. While you may need to spend some money, investing in a good mattress, bedding, and even a white noise machine can help you get better rest every night.
In summary, getting high-quality sleep isn’t rocket science. While it may take some experimenting to figure out what works best for you, following these three tips will help you on your journey to getting better rest.