Sleep hygiene is a deliberate practice that ensures a better and healthier sleeping routine. It lets your body gets proper and adequate rest during the night. You can break down proper sleep hygiene habits into two subgroups:
- Bedtime routines that cover anything from reading a book to meditating for a few minutes before drifting off to sleep.
- Day-to-day activities that may alter your sleeping patterns
Why Is Good Sleep Hygiene Important?
Healthy sleeping habits are helpful because they can provide you with the following benefits.
The primary benefit of developing good sleep hygiene and habits is that it helps you develop a relationship that ensures you actually enjoy sleeping. The quality of your sleep, thus, improves with this sleep hygiene. However, you should note that poor sleep quality is riskier than not getting enough sleep.
Therefore, it’s better to have seven hours of continuous sleep without any form of disturbance than to have 10 hours of irregular and interrupted sleep.
Finally, there is a direct correlation between sleeping and having improved productivity during the day. The effects of poor sleep include:
- Hindered ability to think
- Slower physical reactions and;
- A sense of being emotionally drained or burnt out.
How to Improve Your Sleep Hygiene
Keep a regular and consistent sleep schedule
To improve your sleep hygiene, you can attempt to sleep and wake up at about the same time every day. This would include weekends, and the effects would be the reinforcement of your body’s sleep cycle, or better still, your “internal clock.”
Create a relaxing bedtime routine —and stick with it
A soothing ritual before bed might help you relax and get ready for sleep. Additionally, this will help your body recognize when it is time to go to bed. This would help you get to sleep even faster.
To help you ease into your bedtime routine, you can have a warm bath and even try gentle stretches. You can also listen to soothing music that will lull you to sleep.
Turn off electronic devices
You should note that electronic devices emit blue light, which lessens the melatonin levels in your body. This light may alter your brain, thereby making it alert. The resulting consequence is that you may be unable to fall asleep.
Therefore, you can switch off your phone whenever you want to sleep to prevent notifications from interfering with your sleep.
Exercising regularly will significantly improve your sleep quality, in addition to your overall health. However, you should avoid working out before you sleep, which may make it harder for your body to fall asleep.
Limit the way you ingest caffeine
You should know that the effects of caffeine can last anywhere from three to seven hours after consumption. Therefore, you should take your caffeine in the morning and limit your intake to only mornings, as the less caffeine you take, the easier it is to fall asleep.
Make your sleep environment conducive to you
Furthermore, you should ensure that your environment is conducive for your body to sleep. Ensure that we have comfortable mattress pillows and even bed linens.
Use your bed only for sexual intercourse and sleep
Limiting your activities on the bed will aid your brain’s association between the bed and sleep. When you use your bed to eat, read, and do other activities, it is harder to fall asleep.
Only go to bed when you’re tired
Finally, ensure that you only go to bed when you are ready to sleep. Tossing and turning may leave you frustrated, which may leave you awake for longer.