7 Practices to Promote Sound Sleep

March 04, 2019

7 Practices to Promote Sound Sleep

Everything that you do before you go to bed affects your ability to enjoy sound sleep. As you prepare for a rejuvenating night’s sleep, practice some of these simple rituals instead of counting sheep.

1. Eat dinner earlier. Eating heavy meals right before bed can interfere with sleep, increase the probability of disturbing dreams, and negatively affect hormone balance. You don’t have to take up intermittent fasting; just have an earlier and lighter dinner for better sleep.

2. Keep the electronics out of the bedroom. Take a suggestion from spas like the Mandarin Oriental in Boston whose popular device-free wellness retreats involves checking in your phone. Create your own device-free sleep retreat in your bedroom. Invest in an actual alarm clock instead of using your phone (and its sleep-disturbing blue light) to remind you to wake up in the morning.

3. Darkness Leads to Deeper Sleep. It may be unsurprising to learn that we really do sleep better in a dark room. Try blackout curtains, reducing screen time before bed, and reduce light use in your bedroom before sleep. Be extra careful of blue light wavelengths produced by electronics as well as LED And fluorescent bulbs. Our bodies are so sensitive to blue light that less melatonin will be produced. Reduce your pre-bed exposure for better sleep.

4. Be Mindful when you Caffeinate. While you may love that morning cup of coffee or other caffeinated drink, slow down your caffeine intake during the day. And choose a time to stop altogether. Even if you can fall asleep, studies show that caffeine can interfere with the body’s ability to enter into stages of deep sleep.

5. Choose Your Pillow Wisely. How you prop your head can affect your ability to relax in bed. Pillows come in many shapes, sizes, materials, and filling. Try different options and discover what helps you fully relax.

6. Smell your way to Sleep. If you enjoy essential oils, they can be beneficial sleep aids. Try spraying your pillow in the evening or use a diffuser. Lavender is the oil that has been studied the most frequently, but others such as camomile, sandalwood, and vetiver are also used for sleep. Alternatively, you can choose something you enjoy that you associate with sleep.

7. Relaxation Practices Support Sleep. Practices like meditation and breathing techniques that relax the nervous system are proven to help support falling and staying asleep.


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