Have visits from Mr. Sandman been few and far in between lately? You’re not alone. Nearly one-third of the general population has problems with sleep disruption or insomnia.
With people working long hours and worrying about home and family obligations, it’s easy to see what causes insomnia. What isn’t so clear-cut is how to cure it. What works for one person may prove pointless for another.
However, before you turn to your doctor for a sleep aid prescription, try giving one or more of our natural sleep support tips a try. They may just be your savior for your sleepless nights.
In This Post:
1. Create a Bedtime Routine
Just as kids need time to prepare for their nightly snooze, adults can benefit from a bedtime routine as well. The practice of “winding down” from the busy workday helps prepare the mind for shuteye. Some people find having a ritual such as taking a warm shower and catching up on reading can help them feel sleepy.
Whatever you enjoy doing to help you get ready to go to bed, you should start it a couple of hours before actually getting under the sheets.
2. Enjoy a Healthy Snack Before Bedtime
Yes, it’s OK to eat before tucking yourself in—as long as it’s a light, healthy snack that can help promote sleep. Foods that contain tryptophan, an amino acid that helps you feel drowsy, are a good choice. Dairy foods, turkey and chicken meat, salmon, pumpkin seeds, and peanuts are all good sources of tryptophan.
You may also have better luck falling asleep after consuming healthy carbs and grains such as a bowl of unsweetened cereal or oatmeal or popcorn. Just be sure to stay away from any foods that contain caffeine or sugar, as they can keep you awake. Salty and greasy foods such as processed meats can send your digestive system into overdrive, making it difficult to sleep.
Keep your snack on the light side and it may just become your secret to a better night’s rest.
3. Try Essential Oils or CBD Products
Essential oils—which are all-natural concentrated oils derived from plants, flowers, and herbs—have the power to soothe or stimulate us depending upon their scent. If sleep has been elusive, try diffusing lavender oil or spritzing a diluted solution onto your sheets or pillowcases. Lavender is well-noted for its sleep-inducing properties, which is why you’ll find it added to so many baby products.
Other good essential oils that can help you relax and fall asleep faster include bergamot, valerian, chamomile (which is also found in tea), sweet marjoram, and cedarwood. Experiment with these oils to find which scent works best for you. Use a diffuser to gently disperse them in your bedroom a few hours before you plan on turning in.
CBD or hemp products have similar stress-reducing benefits and may also produce a better night’s sleep. They deliver all of the benefits of marijuana without the “high” feeling. While you can consume CBD or hemp in food products or as supplements, you may find smokable hemp oil to be helpful for inducing sleep.
Many of us can’t fall asleep because of worrying thoughts in our head that play in an endless loop when we’re in bed. Meditation helps break the cycle of these thoughts by clearing our mind and forcing us to focus on more positive thoughts and mindfulness. It also helps us focus on our breathing, which can bring blood pressure down and calm the heart rate.
There are several free guided meditations on YouTube designed to help you relax and drift off to sleep, but actually any guided meditation can offer the same results. And the best thing about meditating is that no special skills are required; if you can focus on your breathing and visualize, you can do it.
5. Keep Your Cool
If you’ve ever tried to sleep on a hot, muggy night you know how uncomfortable it can be. Likewise, keeping your bedroom too warm during the cooler months can have the same effect.
Keep your room’s temperature at a range of between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit for ideal sleeping conditions. It’s much easier to layer on another blanket if you need it versus trying to cool down. Lowering your thermostat can also help reduce your monthly energy bill.
If your mattress is making you hot, it could be the synthetic memory foam which tends to retain heat. Try switching to an organic mattress. These all-natural mattresses are made of natural rubber latex, wool, and cotton which are all breathable materials that help regulate body temperature.
6. Power Down Mobile Devices
Although it’s tempting to want to catch up with your Facebook friends at night, using a computer or mobile device too close to bedtime can keep you awake. That’s because these devices emit a blue light that tricks the body into thinking that it’s still daylight, and that makes it harder to feel sleepy.
Try to shut off all screens at least an hour or two before bedtime. If it’s not possible, invest in a pair of reading glasses that block blue light so it won’t disrupt your wake-sleep cycle.
Reading a physical book or magazine can also help you relax for better sleep.
7. Paint Your Bedroom
Believe it or not, your bedroom’s walls and decor may be keeping you awake. Loud, bright colors such as red, orange, and yellow can subconsciously make you feel more energetic and awake. That’s a reason why orange is often a popular interior paint choice for gyms.
A paint and bedding makeover may be in order for more restful sleep. Opt for neutral shades such as soft gray, white, cream, and sand, or a deep navy. Earth tones and very light pastel shades should also work well for a bedroom.
Make sure your bedding and furniture aren’t too bright and distracting.
Try These Sleep Support Tips Tonight
You don’t have to suffer from a lack of sleep. Try these sleep support tips tonight so you can get the proper rest you need to power yourself through the day.
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