Getting sufficient sleep is a crucial aspect of your health and well-being. Many Americans do not get enough sleep on a nightly basis, which can result in immediate and long-term health issues.
Being fully rested can boost your cognitive function, protect your body, and affect your overall quality of life. Here are six ways you can practice good sleep habits and benefit from the many ways it boosts your health:
1. Follow a regular sleep schedule: Getting into a rhythm of going to sleep at the same time every night and waking up at the same time in the morning is an important aspect of sleep health. Avoid napping in the late afternoon and evening as it may keep you awake at night
2. Develop a bedtime routine: Along with following a regular sleep schedule, having a bedtime routine can greatly improve your quality of sleep. As you prepare for bed the same way each night, your body will automatically start shifting into sleep mode. Take time to relax before bedtime, allowing your mind and body to wind down. Try reading a book or listening to soothing music to prepare for bed.
3. Organize your sleeping environment: It is important to make sure your space is optimal for a good night’s sleep. Keep your bedroom dark, not too hot or cold, and make sure it is as quiet as possible so you are not disturbed. Be sure to have a comfortable mattress that supports your back and joints, and experiment with different thicknesses of pillows to find the best fit for you.
4. Don’t eat close to bedtime: Be careful about when and how much your eat. Large meals close to bedtime may keep you awake because your body is still digesting the food instead of preparing for sleep. On the other hand, a light snack a few hours before bedtime can benefit your quality of sleep.
5. Avoid caffeine: Drinking coffee or other caffeinated beverages later in the day may hinder your ability to get to sleep, which could throw off your entire sleep routine. Plus, waking up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night makes it harder to be fully rested.
6. Use your bedroom only for sleeping: Using your bedroom only for sleeping cues your body that it is time to wind down for the night.