10 Tips to Improve Your Sleep Hygiene
Have you heard of the term “sleep hygiene” before? Yes, it sounds odd, but it refers to your sleeping habits. The truth is, most sleep problems come down to inadequate sleep hygiene. Does your sleep routine need a makeover? It’s to improve your sleep and quality of life by making some changes in your sleep hygiene. Here are our tips:
1. Block blue light before bed
Considering you are reading this on our blog, this one is probably obvious. You need to block out blue light at least 90 minutes before bed to get a good night sleep. This doesn’t mean using f.lux or night-mode on your phone, it means blocking out ALL blue light. Blue light can infiltrate your eyes from screens, household lighting and various objects in your house that emit light. We recommend wearing Night Swannies at least 90 minutes before bed. They can they block 99% of blue light from hitting your eyes. We also recommend trying to avoid screens during the 90 minutes before you go to bed.
2. Pay attention to your biological body clock
Dating back to caveman times, we’ve always had a biological body clock that tells us when it’s day and night. The problem today is our lives are far more complicated. Due to technology, our lives are invaded by blue light. Now, our bodies have a hard time differentiating between day and night. Blue light rays between 380nm – 450nm disrupt our circadian rhythms and suddenly our body no longer knows when it’s time to be awake and when’s time to sleep. The best way to reset your circadian rhythms is by getting sunlight in the morning. The sun emits healthy blue light rays between 450nm – 500nm that helps to keep your biological body clock in check.
Tip: Get a healthy dose of sunlight every morning to improve your sleep quality at night.
3. Improve your sleep environment
Take a look at your bedroom. Is it the best environment to sleep in? Here are a few essential characteristics of an excellent sleep environment to help you decide:
- Must be dark at night. During your daytime naps, you can get a sleeping mask to help you make sure you’ll get those quality Zzzzz’s.
- Has a good mattress and pillows, not too hard and not too soft.
- Is quiet! Block out all noise. If you can’t, invest in a pair of earplugs.
- Has the right temperature for sleeping: approximately 60 – 67 Degrees Fahrenheit
- Is tidy. A messy space clouds your mind and your bedroom is a place to relax. Don’t let a messy bedroom affect your sleep!
You might also be interested in: Hacks To Cool Down To Get To Sleep
4. Avoid stimulants and alcohol before bedtime
This one is pretty obvious. Avoid coffee, sugar, nicotine, alcohol and other stimulants before going to sleep. Here’s why: Stimulants increase your blood pressure and heart rate making it hard to fall asleep. Alcohol affects the nervous system. It may help you fall asleep but it will interrupt your sleeping patterns and make you feel tired in the morning.
You might also be interested in: 6 Sleep-inducing Drinks You Can Easily Make Yourself
5. Exercise during the day…
… not before bedtime. Exercise will increase your heart rate and energy level making it harder for you to fall asleep.
Tip: Exercise during the day! Even 30 minutes of exercise can have a significant benefit on your sleep. It will prepare your body for sleep and give you the right amount of sleepiness so you can sleep throughout the night.
6. Establish a bedtime routine
People love routine yet they successfully manage to avoid it. Do yourself a favor and start a bedtime routine, your tired self will thank you! Here are a few tips to help you:
- Go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time every morning. If you find this hard, start a sleep journal so you can track your sleep and awake times.
- Organize your night, this will help you establish a consistent routine. When do you shower? When do you brush your teeth?
- Start to shut off screens and bright lighting 90 minutes before bed
- Create a wind-down routine. How do you relax? Be mindful that your mind needs time to slow down. Meditation is a great way to wind down – we recommend using Muse Headset or Headspace.
7. Your bed is for sleeping ONLY
Yes, it’s easy to take a movie or your work to bed, but DON’T. It’s ruining your sleep. Your bedroom is a place for you to relax. If your bedroom becomes a place where you constantly stimulate your mind, your body will think it’s a place to stay awake. Your bedroom should only be for sleep and intimacy. That’s it.
8. Can’t fall asleep? Get up and try again.
Don’t be too hard on yourself if you can’t fall asleep. One of the worst things you can do is lie there waiting endlessly to fall asleep.
9. Avoid Naps
Naps can easily disrupt your sleep and make it harder to sleep at night. Avoid taking long naps later in the day as you will find yourself twiddling your thumbs trying to fall asleep that night. For best sleeping results, make sure you stick to these rules:
10. Eat light meals before going to bed
Keep a healthy balanced diet. If you’re one of those people that get hungry before bed or need a midnight snack, go for something light instead. Heavy and unhealthy meals will interrupt your sleep. There you have it, ten tips to improve your sleep hygiene. We challenge you to make these changes and let us know how much your sleep improves. We can help you out with blocking blue light, blocking out bedroom light and noise but the rest is up to you.
Start Overhauling Your Sleep Today
Wearing Swannies every day helps you work, rest and play!