Do you often struggle to fall asleep? Is it getting in the way of your productivity and well-being? This is a very common situation in this hectic day and age, and the common reaction is to seek medication that will provide a quick fix. While there’s nothing inherently wrong with doing so, it’s really not the best solution on the long term. Read this article to learn about better alternatives.
Avoid stimulants and realize they’re everywhere.
One of the most obvious habits that you will have to seriously consider changing if you’re having sleeping problems is to reduce your intake of stimulating substances. The most obvious culprit being coffee, of course, but chances are you’re indulging in several other stimulants without even realizing so. Nicotine will also wreak havoc with your natural rhythms, as well as sugary drinks – especially sodas. Consider gradually cutting back on these substances, or at least use them only in the first half of the day, and you will notice positive results within days. As you’ll learn in the following sections, improving your sleep is not so much about the things you do… but rather the timing of your activities.
Get regular physical exercise… during daytime
Increasing your level with physical exercise can also do wonders to increase your ability to fall asleep during nighttime. Sometimes, the reason why you can’t sleep is just because you’re not wearing out your body enough - which is very common in our deskbound workaholic societies. Getting regular physical exercise will improve your ability to rest during the night, and it will also boost your energy levels and sense of well-being during your waking hours. There is, however, a key consideration to keep in mind: you should make sure to exercise earlier in the day, since intense physical activity at the later hours can put your mind into overdrive and actually make you experience difficulties falling asleep.
Refrain from filling your stomach before bedtime
Another important lifestyle adjustment that you should consider if you’re having trouble falling asleep is to never go to sleep with a full stomach. Digesting food in a horizontal position is not ideal, and it will increase your chances of experiencing heartburn and other uncomfortable sensations that will not be conducive to relaxing and enjoying a peaceful night. This doesn’t mean you need to go to bed with hunger pangs for the sake of sleeping, since this too would interfere with your ability to rest. There’s nothing wrong with having a snack in the evening… just make sure it’s something light, comforting and do not immediately run from the kitchen to the bed.
Avoid napping and sleeping out of hours
Most people who have trouble sleeping during the night will invariably feel tempted to sneak in a little napping during the day, whenever they get a chance. This actually works for some people who favor polyphasic sleep… but it it’s not working for you, it means you’re not such a person. If you keep trying to make up for lost sleep during the day and you can never seem to get it right, then you need to consider going in the opposite direction – sleep only during the night, and embrace a strict sleeping schedule until your body is properly trained… even if it means going sleepless for a couple of nights.
Establish up a relaxing evening routine
A great way to establish a good sleep schedule is to create a relaxing routine that you will always perform in preparation of a good night’s rest. Start looking at your evening routine as the foreplay to a good night’s sleep. Drink some relaxing herbal tea, play some soothing music, cuddle up with a book, do whatever activities you find relaxing. Think of it as a ritual that will gradually make it easier for your to fall asleep when the time comes for you actually hit the pillow. You may also need assistance sleeping that is where CPAP divices can help many sites online offer them such as CPAP Direct or Mouser.
If you’re serious about improving your sleep cycles without relying on medication that could lead to unwanted effects on the long the term, then you will have to consider making some changes to your lifestyle. It may involve cutting back on some unproductive habits but you’ll find the results will be more than worth the sacrifices, once you realize how better you will feel when you get insomnia out of your life.