Sleep TipsNov 12, 2020
Do you lay down, feel restless, and notice you mind racing? Insomnia is frustrating.
The book, Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker, PhD, has some practical tips. They are as follows:
- Stick to a sleep schedule to help ensure 7-8 hours of consistent sleep. Remember, we are creatures of habit.
- Try to exercise 30 min most days BUT not later than 2-3hrs before bedtime.
- Avoid caffeine and nicotine. Your cup of coffee can take up to 8hrs to wear off. Nicotine is a stimulant.
- Alcohol keeps you in lighter stages of sleep. Avoid evening alcohol to increase REM sleep.
- Stick to a light snack at night if you are hungry. Skip the large dinner. Be mindful to limit fluid consumption in the last couple of hours before bed.
- Medications can disrupt sleep or cause insomnia. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you take blood pressure, asthma, or cold/allergy medications to see if changes could be made. Avoid taking sleep medications such as Ambien, Lunesta, etc. They may make insomnia worse.
- Avoid naps after 3pm.
- Relax before bed. Put your phone away. Read. Journal. Meditate (Facebook Live Monday Meditation @PausetoRemember and IGTV @PausetoRemember has some options).
- Take a hot bath before bed to drop your body temperature and help you feel sleepy. Cover cold feet with socks.
- Make your room dark, screen/gadget free, cool (~65 degrees). Turn your clock away from your head.
- Get natural sunlight for 30 min every day.
- If you lay awake for 20 min, get up and do a relaxing activity until you feel sleepy.
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