A good night's sleep is vital for physical and mental well-being. A proper sleep routine can make a big difference in the quality of your life. Here are some simple tips to creating a bedtime routine that can help you sleep better.
Follow regular sleep schedule
Body clock, also known as sleep-wake cycle or circadian rhythm, is a natural internal system that regulates feelings of drowsiness and wakfulness. It's very important to remain in sync with your body clock. Maintaining a regular sleep schedule everyday, even on weekends, may be helpful. When your circadian rhythm is balanced it will also improve the quality of your sleep and thereby improve your physical and mental health.
Working out few hours before your bedtime may boost up your body and you may face difficulty in catching sleep. But by working out in the early hours of the day, you will drain your energy by the bedtime. So it is better to hit the gym in the morning or afternoon. Proper exercise not just improves the quality of your sleep but reduces stress and anxiety. Absence of stress will help you fall asleep easily.
Be mindful of what you eat and drink
What you eat affects your sleep. Avoid heavy and spicy meals for dinner. It can cause discomfort and indigestion, making it difficult to fall asleep. Don't eat late in the night. Have your dinner 2 or 3 hours before your bedtime. If you are hungry while going to sleep, have some light snacks. Don't go to sleep with an empty stomach as well. Eat carbohydrate rich foods. Avoid alcohol and nicotine as it can disrupt your sleep. Avoid drinking lots of liquids before sleep as it can disrupt your sleep by making you get up and go to the bathroom frequently. Caffeine leads to sleep deprivation. Don't forget that caffeine is present not just in coffee but also in foods such as dark chocolate, energy drinks, sodas and tea.
Control your exposure to light
The circadian rhythm is proportional to light. That's why we are active while the sun is shinning and drowsy when it's dark. Increase the exposure of light during the day but avoid bright light during the evening, especially before going to bed. The blue light emitted by digital screens can affect your sleep. Reduce the screen brightness or switch to night shift mode in the evening. When its your bedtime, make the room dark. Block any light that is entering your room using curtains. You can also use a sleep mask if needed.
Prepare your bedroom
Keep your room quiet, cool, dark and peaceful. Reduced noise can help you fall asleep better. Sleeping in a cold room helps you fall asleep faster. In general, the ideal sleeping temperature is between 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep your bedroom bright and cheerful during the day but when it is time to sleep, turn off the lights. Sleep on a comfortable bed, mattress and pillow.