According to Harvard Medical School, “In the short term, a lack of adequate sleep can affect judgment, mood, ability to learn and retain information, and may increase the risk of serious accidents and injury.”
Be this as it may, many people still struggle with sleep. Some don’t even realize there is a problem. They go to sleep and seem to sleep through the night, yet the sleep is inadequate and they still feel not rested the next day.
You might be surprised to learn how helpful good sleep can be. Good sleep can decrease anxiety and depression as well as prevent many other physical ailments.
This won’t do. In maintaining a happy healthy lifestyle, sleep is vital. That’s why we’ve put together some tips to help you get a better night’s rest.
5 Tips for Better Sleep
Cut Back on Alcohol
Hey hey, don’t kill the messenger! Alcohol is a great way to relax at the close of a long day and it’s especially great this time of year to combat holiday stress. Unfortunately, it also can prevent you from getting adequate sleep. Consider this statement from The Sleep Foundation,
“Anyone who drinks alcohol from time to time knows that beer, wine, or spirits can sometimes leave you feeling drowsy. In fact, as many as 20 percent of Americans use alcohol to help them fall asleep. But while alcohol, a depressant, can help you fall asleep faster, it also contributes to poor quality sleep later.”
Consider going to bed clear-headed and avoid the bottle for a night or two to give your brain an opportunity to catch up on some shut-eye.
Decrease your on screen time before bed
Again, try not and kill the messenger. Most of us are aware that people on average will watch 5+ hours of television. Doing so not only wakes your brain up, but it keeps you grounded in the physical self when falling asleep when you should be drifting off into the land of the unconscious. Instead of watching the old boob tube, try instead meditation, reading, or writing in your journal. Your cell phone is not a good substitution for television or any other interactive screen for that matter. The time before bed is your time, not everyone else’s.
Understand Your Caffeine Intake
This piece of wisdom is pretty self-explanatory. Caffeine keeps people up and puts them on high alert. There is no question that in excess caffeine can create nervousness and anxiety. Two things that go very badly with a good night’s rest. It is for the exact reasons that we love to drink this amazing caffeinated beverages during the daytime—decreased drowsiness, increased alertness—that sleep becomes interrupted later on.
Because everyone has a different threshold of what their bodies can intake for caffeine, it’s important that you figure out what yours is so that you can monitor your intake throughout the day.
Adjust your eating habits
What we eat as well as what time of day we eat are both factors that affect quality sleep. For example, if you take an excessive amount of sugar throughout the day, your body’s ability to process all the sugar may be working on overdrive. This could cause trouble in the sleep department. In addition, if you eat straight before bed, your body will be working on digesting your food when it should be shutting down for a good night’s sleep. Being mindful of your body and the nourishment that you put into your body is good for mood stabilizing, health, fitness, and, of course, getting better rest.
When you sleep you allow your mind and body to heal. People who get good rest have less of a chance of getting heart disease, diabetes, and other long-term health risks. It’s important for you and your family who want you to live a full healthy life. This is something you have control over and you owe it to yourself. Show yourself a little love. It’s important to open heart space for you too. Wishing you much health and love on your journey to a more healthy way of life.
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