Two in five people have sleep problems that include insomnia or restlessness that easily wakens them. About one on four people can live on 6 hours of sleep per night and function perfectly without any problem. The root of most sleeping problems generally can be found right in our own homes. What we eat, what hobbies we have and how much exercises play a very important role in our sleeping patterns. Here are our tips to help you sleep well. After all: with a good night’s rest you can take on the world!
Rest and relax
It may sound like a contradiction in terms, especially if your sleep problems are tiring you out, but busy lifestyles with little or no rest during the day are one of their main cause in this day and age. You really need to find the time to relax and unwind. Take a walk or a bike ride, for example. Go to the cinema or treat yourself to a session at the sauna. Read a good book… Just choose the activity which best suits you.
Also avoid watching TV or sitting at your computer late into the evening. That kind of stimulation can affect your sleep.
We all know that regular exercise is good for us. But did you know that it can help overcome sleep problems, too? Perhaps it seems obvious, but the more you exert your body during the day, the better you sleep at night. But be aware that intensive training in the evening can have the opposite effect.
Food and drink have their part to play, as well. A fatty, spicy or heavy meal just before bed can disrupt your sleep. So too can coffee, tea and alcohol, and also smoking. Simply avoiding this kind of stimulant may well help you sleep better at night.
Products to help you sleep
On the other side of the coin, some products help you sleep well. Melatonin is a good example. Our bodies produce this sleep hormone naturally, but it’s also available in tablet form if your levels need topping up. Magnesium oil is known for its relaxing effect and the amino acid L-theanine, found in many kinds of white and green tea, reduces stress. Special dietary advice for better sleep applies to women in the menopause .
Stick to a regular daily rhythm
By going to bed and getting up at the same time each day, you tell your body when to be active and when to rest. Sticking to this kind of regular daily routine may thus ease your problems with sleep, or at least stop them getting any worse. For this reason, try to avoid taking naps during the day, even if you’ve slept badly.
Noise, light, heat, an uncomfortable bed… They can all prevent you enjoying a good night’s sleep. A dark, quiet, cool room is the best place to bed down for the night. There’s no place for a TV or computer in that ideal bedroom. Or for a bed that doesn’t feel right. Or for nightclothes you’re not comfortable in.
See your GP
If none of the above tips help you sleep any better, we advise that you seek professional support. After all, persistent lack of sleep can damage your physical and mental health. And the longer you leave your problems untreated, the harder they are to resolve. Your GP may recommend that you undergo sleep therapy, or prescribe medication to improve your sleep.
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Last updated on October 13, 2016.
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