Tips for a good nights sleep
There are a number of factors that may increase your risk for insomnia and by addressing these you may improve your sleep quality and quantity.
- Establish and maintain a regular time for going to bed and rising (rising at the same time is important) Best to retire no later than 11pm
- Expose yourself to bright light/sunlight in morning on waking
- Get up when you wake up – don’t linger in bed
- No coffee after lunch or any caffeine after 2 pm
- Avoid drinking soft drinks
- Your neck / back / shoulders might need some attention (consider seeing a physiotherapist – www.gracevillephysio.com.au)
- Eat light meals at night – your body needs to use its energy to rejuvenate itself rather than spend the night digesting food you have eaten
- At night dim the lights, turn on low watt lamps and turn down T.V. etc.
- Avoid tyramine foods after 5pm (aged foods)
- Avoid eating starches after 5pm
- Make sure the bedroom is completely dark and free from noise (consider ear plugs, eye mask, blockout curtains)
- Create a sleep promoting environment that is comfortable (cool, quiet, dark.)
- Avoid using an electric blanket (or warm up then unplug from wall)
- Electrical appliances and mobile phones should be at a distance of one metre or more from bed
- Avoid watching TV in bed
- Avoid cigarettes 2 hours before bed, or even better – QUIT!
- Avoid exercising too late at night
- Avoid naps late in the afternoon, If you need a “Power nap” during the day, 20 minutes before 2pm is OK, only if need.
- Nasal breathing is essential/close your mouth! Breathing nasal strips can open up nasal passages (from chemist)
- Establish a regular bedtime routine/ritual so that you start to connect these prebed activities (such as a bath, or listening to certain music) with a winding-down sensation, and then doing them or even thinking about them will make you feel relaxed and sleepy.
- Learn ways to manage stress. Consider talking to a counsellor?
- There may be other factors contributing to poor sleep – so speak to your Naturopath, Nutritionist or Doctor if insomnia persists. For more information on some of the testing we have available, have a look at this link – Sleep Profile Test.
The biggest challenge is to try not to worry about your lack of sleep, as this just creates extra pressure on you to fall asleep, perpetuating insomnia.