Most people don’t get enough sleep, which can lead to countless health issues ranging from difficulty concentrating and headaches to workplace accidents and even to long-term diseases like cancer and heart disease.
Let’s take a look at a few things you can do to improve the quality and duration of your sleep.
1. Have a Regular Sleep Schedule
Sleeping in on weekends can feel good at the time, but it can actually throw off your sleep patterns and disrupt your slumber during the week. Try to keep to the same schedule of sleeping and waking every day.
2. Exercise Every Day
Even a light jog or some yoga for five or ten minutes during the day can help your body become tired in time for you to go to bed. Just make sure not to exercise too late, as the increase in heart rate and metabolism can actually keep you up longer.
3. Skip the Midnight Snack
When you eat, your metabolism increases and heart rate speeds up as you digest your food. Try to avoid eating in the hour or two before bed to ensure that your body is in a total resting state once you lie down.
4. Don’t Drink Alcohol Before Bed
The myth of the nightcap helping you drift off is a pervasive one. While alcohol might make you feel tired, drinking interferes with the deeper levels of sleep. This means that when you wake up, you won’t feel nearly as rested as if you’d skipped that glass of wine.
5. Avoid Stimulants
Caffeine and nicotine can both make you jittery, so definitely avoid stimulants such as these before you hit the hay. Watch out for unsuspected stimulants, too, like those in cold and allergy medications.
Looking for more tips on getting a good night’s sleep? Check out this infographic.