Balance through Sleep: Simple Tips for Insomnia & Getting a Good Night’s Sleep
- Stick to specific times of waking up and going to bed – no matter what day of the week, including weekends. This will regulate your internal sleep-wake cycle.
- Avoid eating your last meal too close to bedtime, and avoid liquids late in the evening.
- Avoid smoking and all stimulants 8 hours before going to bed. This includes caffeine in coffee and fizzy drinks. Alcohol can also disrupt sleep cycles.
- Exercise during the day can help to relax the body and eliminate stress, helping to promote restful sleep (for some, exercising too close to bed time may have the opposite effect).
- Make your bedroom a quiet place that is as comfortable as possible. Use earplugs if noise is an issue, or blackout curtains if you need total darkness.
- Avoid sleeping during the day, as this may limit nighttime sleep. If you have to nap, do so for half an hour (maximum) in the afternoon.
- Make sure your bed is comfortable and suited to your needs. Avoid sharing with pets and children if it is very disruptive.
- Create a ‘winding down’ routine that you follow each night. This could include a bath by candlelight, soft music, dimmed lights or a glass of warm milk.
- Go to bed as soon as you feel tired. If you are still awake after 15 minutes, get up and do something until you are tired again; avoid lying in bed tossing and turning, as this could make matters worse!