Do you spend your days wishing more sheep had been counted in your dreams the evening before? If you do, you're not alone. In fact, the National Sleep Foundation's inaugural Sleep Health Index finds that forty-five percent of Americans say that insufficient or poor sleep affects their daily activities at least once weekly. The report also finds that poor sleep quality correlates with poor health, indicating just how detrimental sleeping, and sleeping well, is to our overall quality of life. If you are you one of the millions of people the world over who have trouble falling asleep at night, check out our five helpful sleep hacks below to ensure a better night and better morning.
Employ the Ninety Minute Rule
In his book Night School, Richard Wiseman makes note that during the sleep cycle our brain enters a new stage every ninety minutes. This means that by ending your nightly rest at the end of one of these ninety-minute stages you will awaken closer to your normal waking state, meaning a more restful and beneficial evening's sleep. Following this idea, you can backtrack in ninety minute intervals to determine the best time to fall asleep.
Know When and How Much to Nap
As any fan of napping knows, it can be a risky gambit if you're wanting to get a good night's sleep and still have enough energy to conquer your day. Some experts believe that you should avoid sleeping too long, citing a twenty to thirty-minute nap as the best way to gain an energy boost while not entering a deep sleep state. Others, however, suggest completing a full ninety-minute sleep cycle for the most effective napping results. It is also suggested the best time to nap during the day is between the hours of 1 and 3 PM, as natural energy levels begin to drop around 11 AM.
Get Your Caffeine Fix Just Before You Crash
If you do choose to nap and partake in caffeine, knowing the best time for both can optimize your energy flow upon waking. Generally, caffeine takes around twenty minutes to affect the body. This means that if you choose to take a short nap, drinking a cup of coffee and then lying down may be most effective. This allows you to attain both the energy provided through short rest and your cup of joe.
Stay Away From Phones and Computers Before Bed
Research has found that the blue light emitted from devices such as phones, computers, television can inhibit Melatonin production, making it harder to fall asleep. Dimming phone or computer screens when working late can aid in combating this, however, forgoing contact with these devices at least twenty minutes before bed is suggested. Amber tinted glasses can be worn throughout the day to block blue light and improve mood and sleep quality.
Try Using Sleep Podcasts, Noise Machines, and Playlists
If you're someone who needs background noise in order to sleep, there are plenty of options these days. White noise and nature sound emitting apps or noise machines can provide non-stimulating sound to help you fall asleep better and faster. Richard Wiseman, who we discussed early, teamed up with University of Columbia psychologist Dave Elliot to produce this specially made track of the world's most relaxing music. In addition, podcasts like Sleep With Me work to tell increasingly boring stories in monotone or relaxing voices to provide a kind of vocal, narrative white noise for those who fall asleep to talk radio.
Invest in Sleeping Better
With these five helpful hacks, you'll be resting and feeling better in no time. However, making an investment in sleeping better can sometimes be as easy as finding a new mattress or bedding to enhance your nightly comfort quality. In the greater Florida area, Land of Sleep offers some incredible products for your bedding needs to help you fall asleep, stay asleep, and wake up better rested. Land of Sleep's brand listings showcases the full variety of merchandise offered to you or you can get in touch for more information on what they can offer. Check out Land of Sleep today to find out how you can sleep better tonight and feel better tomorrow!