Summer is supposed to be the time you take a break, go on vacation, or lay out in the sun. It’s the party time of the year!
But in reality, that lifestyle more describes elementary kids on their first day of summer break. Us parents, on the other hand, have to worry about the kids home, have to go to work, and life only gets even more crazy!!
So how can you wind down after all that? I think some of us think that we finally get some free time at bedtime, and continue to stay up late because of it. I do it all the time. But, I can promise you, you will feel 1,000 times better physically, mentally, and emotionally if you can get a good night’s rest.
So here are 6 tips to help get you the sleep you deserve!
Eat Well and Maintain a Healthy Exercise Routine – Eating a healthy diet and getting plenty of exercise keeps our weight in check, but it also helps with sleep. Eating high carbohydrate foods floods the muscles with glucose, causing involuntary muscle movements during sleep, which disrupts rest. Exercising too close to bedtime ramps up metabolism and body temperature and can make it difficult to fall asleep. If you get hungry before bed, try snacking on a hand full of nuts. Nuts provide protein and fat, which are not only satisfying, but are slowly digested, which can provide a calm sleep, and rich in magnesium, a mineral that helps to calm the nervous system.
Maintain a Rhythm – Try to maintain a regular sleep schedule, going to bed at the same time and waking up at the same time. Creating this rhythm helps regulate your body’s internal clock and may help you sleep better.
Just Say No to Alcohol, Caffeine, Nicotine, and Electronics – All of these can make going to sleep difficult. Don’t drink alcohol or caffeinated drinks too close to bedtime. Remove all electronics from the bedroom, including TVs,computers, and other electronic devices. Try to avoid bright light at least an hour before going to bed. Darkness will help your body begin producing melatonin, a hormone that naturally regulates sleep. To help keep your internal clock in balance, be sure to expose yourself to sunlight in the morning, which naturally tells your body to wake up.
Keep Cool – Make sure your bedroom is a quiet, dark, and relaxing environment, which is neither too hot, nor too cold. Your bed and pillows should be supportive, yet comfortable. If you experience shoulder, hip, or back pain in the morning, you can be sure you did not rest as well as you could have. It may be time for new bedding.
Wind Down – Your body needs time to shift into sleep mode, so spend the last hour before bed doing a calming activity such as reading or taking a warm bath. Certain drinks, such as chamomile tea, may be relaxing and non-stimulating.
Use Calming Essential Oils – Essential oils like Lavender and Bergamot are rich in linalool and linalyl acetate, compounds that have well-known relaxing properties. These oils can be diffused aromatically in the bedroom to create a calming and peaceful environment, perfect for getting a good night’s sleep. They can also be used topically and taken internally to calm the nervous system, promote relaxation, and lead to a restful sleep. Try placing two to four drops of Lavender or Bergamot essential oil in a warm, herbal tea (Chamomile, Lemongrass, etc.), or another favorite uncaffeinated beverage about 30 minutes before going to bed, or add two to four drops of Lavender into an empty capsule and swallow about 30 minutes before bed. Here is a list of Essential Oils for Sleep and Relaxation: Lavender • Vetiver • Serenity™ Calming Blend • Bergamot • Roman Chamomile.
So there you have it, 6 tips to a better night’s sleep. I definitely know a few people I need to send this list to, including myself! I hope you find value in this list of tips – or better yet, I hope you find yourself feeling well rested in the morning. Happy sleeping!!