Five Top Tips for a Good Night’s Sleep
Sleep and wellbeing are inextricably linked, there’s no denying that. We need sleep so that our bodies can repair and replenish our energy stores. It’s also when our brains are busy organising memories of the day.
Sleep restores us, and how well we function the next day is based on whether we’ve got enough sleep. We know that getting an average of eight hours sleep is the ideal, but often, for a variety of reasons, this isn’t always possible. So here are some tips for better sleep that are based on simple, easy to implement, lifestyle changes.
1. The importance of a regular sleep routine
The first top tip for a good night’s sleep is keeping a regular sleep routine. Try going to bed and getting up at the same time every day, including the weekends. Sorry. A regular sleep routine helps keep our sleep cycles in check, which is key to us feeling rested the next day. There are four stages of sleep in a cycle and each cycle lasts 1.5 hours. It’s important to go through all four stages, and during an undisturbed night’s sleep we can go through five or six cycles.
Read our article How Much Sleep Do I Need? to find out more.
2. Get outside and exercise
Natural light is free and there for the taking. It also helps our circadian rhythm (internal clock) stay healthy, making us feel awake and alert during the day. So, the next tip for better sleep is getting outside first thing in the morning, which will help you feel energised during the day and sleep more deeply at night. If mornings aren’t your thing, try and get out at lunchtime.
Regular exercise will also put you on the path to a better night’s sleep. So why not combine the two – get that dose of natural light while you go for a walk, run, or maybe even some garden yoga!
3. A healthy bedtime routine
Tip number three of our five top tips for a good night’s sleep is all about your evening routine; what you eat and drink, and when. It’s best not to go to bed feeling thirsty, full or hungry. Drinking lots before bed will increase the likelihood of needing to use the bathroom in the night. Big meals can make you feel uncomfortable and will keep your stomach active when you want to sleep; whilst feeling hungry can also be a distraction. It’s also best to avoid stimulants such as caffeine in the evening. Whilst we all deal with caffeine differently, it’s worth trying to enjoy that last cuppa as early as possible.
And screens. Keep them out of the bedroom if you can, otherwise try to avoid looking at them at least 30 minutes before bed. The blue light they emit trick your body into thinking it’s still daytime and supresses the release of melatonin which helps us feel sleepy.
4. Don’t clock watch
If you don’t fall asleep straight away, the worst thing you can do is clock watch. It only serves to make us feel more stressed and anxious that we’re not asleep. Try turning the clock around or if there are things on your mind, write them down knowing you can go back to them in the morning.
5. The perfect bedroom environment
Our last tip for better sleep is to create a bedroom space that promotes sleep. A bedroom that’s too warm can make you wakeful, so keep it cool - around 20˚C works for most people. Make sure it’s also dark in your bedroom when you want to go to sleep. Use blackout blinds or an eye mask if necessary.
And lastly, make sure your bed is both comfortable and supportive. This will improve the quality of your sleep, helping you to fall asleep quickly and stay asleep. The Sleep Council note that you get 42 minutes of extra sleep when swapping an old bed for a new one!
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At Feather & Black we not only want to help you create a beautiful bedroom but understand the importance of sleep and its impact on our wellbeing. All our beds and mattresses are beautifully constructed, designed to last, and give you a supported and blissfully comfortable night’s sleep.