Lack of sleep is a real issue for many of us. If you have ever suffered from insomnia or have struggled to sleep regularly for any reason then you will be aware of how difficult it can make the rest of your life. It can be a real struggle to concentrate at work or look after children. In more extreme circumstances it can make for dangerous situations if driving or operating any kind of heavy machinery.
Make Sure You Are Tired
Lack of tiredness is a seemingly obvious answer to not being able to sleep, but we rarely address it with any seriousness. If you increase your activity levels during the day then it naturally increases your chances of falling asleep in a reasonable amount of time, as well as generally being good for you to exercise and stay fit and healthy.
Consider Your Bedroom Set-Up
How your bedroom is set-up can be key in whether or not it is helpful or not in getting a good night’s sleep. This will vary from person to person but some things are useful to consider for any of us. Usually the darker it is the better sleep we will have, and getting a good set of black-out curtains or blinds can be a huge help. Temperature is also important, being too cold is a problem, but so is being too hot.
Have the Correct Bed
Your actual bed itself is also very important. You may have a preference for a soft mattress or a hard mattress and there are various options in-between – but you also may consider that there are mattresses that are more or less suitable for specific medical conditions, for example, ghostbed has a good mattress for fibromyalgia which is much better than just buying a standard mattress. Even something like the height of the bed can make a difference as some people like to be closer to the floor whereas others like a nice big high bed, This can even depend on how tall or short you are.
See a doctor
Occasionally, we have sleepless nights. But if you have persistent insomnia, it’s time to see a doctor. You may have a sleeping disorder, like sleep apnea, that prevents you from getting a good night’s rest. Patients with this condition struggle to breathe normally when they sleep, so doctors usually recommend a CPAP machine to keep airways open.
Reduce Caffeine Intake
We know that reducing stimulating substances like sugar and caffeine can be helpful to aid in getting a good night’s sleep, but it is key to consider not only reducing your intake but also changing the times you take it, it’s good advice to try and limit or cut out drinking coffee or taking in sugar in the afternoons or evenings.
Limit Late-Night Screen Time
Artificial light is unnatural to us and the behaviour of staying up late into the evening and the night is a modern phenomenon that is directly attributable to the invention of artificial light sources. Our ancestors pretty much ran with daylight hours, sleeping with sun-down and waking at dawn. So even more so in the last decade or so this problem has been increasing with the introduction of hand-held screen devices being the norm. Most of us have a personal smart-phone and reading on them in bed is a hugely common behaviour. Putting the phone down at least one hour before bed is generally good advice.