Tired? You Need Sleep
I have a feeling that most people are all too familiar with sleep issues. Perhaps you’re not getting enough, you can’t fall asleep…you wake up and can’t get back to sleep, and probably the worst- once you do fall asleep it’s time to get up and feels impossible to do.
So what is at the root of sleep issues? Many have sleep disorders that can be caused by hormonal issues, as well as other medical issues. So for this post I am just going to refer to the ‘typical’ bad nights sleep, which many believe is a result of stress. Stress is indeed a culprit, but what other things can be the cause, and what can we try to help eliminate it?
Even with all the attention shifting toward better health, sleep tends to be one of the last factors in the equation. It is, however, important in sustaining good health, and balancing the good eating habits and physical activity and mental detoxing that we work toward. Adults tend to need an average of 7-9 hours per day. And although we sometimes feel we can do with less and add a few coffees to our diet, we’re not doing ourselves any favors.
Since I mentioned caffeine, that is an obvious culprit, as it can easily stay within our bloodstream for 6 hours after we consume it.
How about alcohol? A soothing glass of wine or a few beers after work part of your routine? It may tend to help you doze off a little easier (maybe), but it actually is known to decrease the quality and time spent in REM sleep, making you more restless through the night.
Do you use your I Phone as an alarm?….And as a habit keep checking your phone, or I Pad, up to minutes before you turn the lights off? These blue light gadgets (artificial light) are known to suppress the release of melatonin, making it harder to fall asleep within an hour of such using the devices.
What about your bedroom? What are you using it for? There should be a basic bedroom rule. It’s used for sleep, and sex. And with that said, you don’t have a tv in this room …right?:)
Here are some other things that you can do to help the sleep process:
~ Establish a sleep routine, where you rise at the same time each day, and go to bed at the same time.
~ Ensure your room is set to a cool temperature, and of course you are sleeping on a comfortable bed.
~ The room should be as dark as possible.
~ If you toss and turn get up and do something that helps make you drowsy (read!)). Keep your bed
associated with sleep.
~ Count sheep (really), or better yet…learn deep breathing techniques that help you relax. This was a life
saver for me, and I can honestly say that I can fall asleep within minutes as a result.
~ Don’t skimp on food. Here are some great ones that help induce sleep:
…Almonds- the magnesium promotes sleep and muscle relaxation. The proteins also maintain blood
…Tea, chamomile tea! Green tea…white tea.
Mmmm….and Yoga! But we’ll save that for another blog post….;)
And sweet dreams!