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Are you getting between seven to nine hours of sleep every night? Many Americans just aren’t getting enough sleep. We get it. There are lots of demands on your time and it can be hard to prioritize sleep. However, sleeping at least seven hours per night will help you wake up feeling refreshed and ready to start a new day. If you’re having a hard time falling asleep or staying asleep, here are 5 tips for sleeping better tonight.
1. Make a Sleep Schedule
Your body thrives on routines. That’s why our number one tip for sleeping better is to make a sleep schedule. Try to go to bed at the same time every night and get up at the same time every morning. Follow this sleep schedule even on the weekends. When you create a healthy routine around sleeping, you’ll work with your body’s natural circadian rhythm. This sleep and wake cycle will help you fall asleep easily and wake up at the same time every day. Sticking to a sleep schedule will help you feel well rested and energetic.
2. Think About Sleep Hygiene
Do you have good evening habits? Another tip for sleeping better is to think about your sleep hygiene. Some of the best sleep hygiene habits include:
- Spending the last hour before you go to bed during relaxing activities, such as reading a book, journaling, drinking tea, or taking a bath. This will help you be in a calm headspace before crawling under the covers.
- Dimming the lights in the evening to signal to your body that it’s almost bedtime.
- Turning off your phone and TV to avoid blue light exposure before bed.
- Avoiding eating one hour before bed so your stomach has time to digest before you hit the hay.
- Avoiding drinking coffee, soda, or other caffeinated drinks in the afternoon or evening, since these drinks can keep you awake at night.
- Limiting your alcohol intake, and switching to water at least a couple hours.
These sleep hygiene habits can help you create a good evening routine and enjoy better sleep.
3. Get Your Room Ready
It’s a good idea to make your room the ideal sleeping spot. Take some time to get your room ready for the night. You should lower the temperature in your room before going to bed. The ideal sleeping temperature is between 60 to 67 degrees. You can also invest in room darkening blinds to keep sunlight out of your room, or wear an eye mask. If you live on a noisy street, get a white noise machine to reduce background distractions and help you get a good night’s sleep.
If you’ve been having trouble sleeping, it may be time for a new mattress. Make sure you have the right mattress for your sleeping needs, and pick your pillow based on your sleeping position.
4. Avoid Napping
As you get used to your new sleeping schedule you might be tempted to take a nap. Napping for 15 minutes during the day can give you a quick energy boost, but you should avoid taking longer naps. This will affect your sleep schedule and make it harder to fall asleep at night.
5. Get Enough Exercise
One way to sleep better tonight is to make sure you get enough exercise. Even doing some light exercise several times per week can help you fall asleep easily and sleep better. Exercising helps you spend more time in deep sleep, or slow wave sleep, so you’ll feel relaxed and well rested in the morning. Getting enough exercise will also make you feel tired, and help you fall asleep easily. Make sure you don’t plan your exercise in the evening, since exercising right before bed can actually give you an extra burst of energy and make it harder for you to fall asleep.
Identify the Cause of Your Sleeplessness
Take some time to think about the quality of your sleep and try to identify the cause of your sleeplessness. Some of the most common causes of a poor night’s sleep are:
- Sleep apnea
- Restless leg syndrome