Take back the sleep, take back your life.
Everyone runs into sleepless nights from time to time, but in fact as much as one third of the UK suffer from regular sleep deprivation. Lack of quality sleep can mess with your focus and productivity, but worse, it can interfere with your health, too. If your sleep routine is making you constantly tired, here are some steps you can take to beat the lack of sleep.
Is Comfort the Problem…?
When sleep is the issue, perhaps the first place we should look for answers is your bed? A bad mattress could be at the root of all your problems. An old, badly looked after or unsupportive mattress can emphasise existing pains or cause further aches, pains and stiffness, interfering with your nights sleep and carrying forward into your daily interactions.
Getting a new mattress might not be in your options, but an easy way to get around a dodgy mattress and increase comfort is to add a mattress topper. Kieran at The Dozy Owl hosted his own quest to find the perfect mattress topper, not resting until he could present you with a handy top 8 pick for various requirements. He’ll also give you the low down on all products sleep related, for greater chances of the ultimate night’s sleep!
Get lost in dreams, not in thoughts…
So if the issue isn’t physical, perhaps its all in you head? Overthinking at bedtime is a ridiculously common practice which ties our brain in knots, fills us with stress and worry, and prevents us from getting to sleep. Here at YCB, we recommend trying to rid yourself of such thoughts before tucking yourself up…
…Take out a little time to think about problems, write down possible solutions, or make a note to follow it up later, emptying your head before going to the bedroom so that these thoughts can’t plague you at night.
If clearing your head alone isn’t enough, try some simple relaxation, meditation or even yoga before bed to help you settle down.
Keeping your room tidy, switching off your devices a set time before bed or lighting some scented candles can also influence your mood and allow you to drift off more easily.
The health feedback
We’ve already established that less or lower quality sleep can impact your health, in fact its linked to a whole suit of diseases and conditions, it may even cause weight gain. The good news is, though you my not be able to choose your quality of sleep, you can choose a healthier lifestyle, which may positively feedback into your ability to sleep.
What you consume, and when is a significant factor. If you depend on caffeine to get you through the day, that’s probably whats keeping you up at night. As much as we hate to admit, its important to have a caffeine cut off point so that its effects don’t last through to bedtime.
Alcohol is another culprit for disrupting sleep. It may make you drowsy, but it leads to unhealthy, poor quality sleep. There are however foods you can eat which positively influence sleep, and chocolate made the list! In small quantities, of course.
Exercise has also been shown to have positive effects on sleep, regardless of the time of day. Exercise releases endorphins, reduces stress, can reset the sleep-wake cycle due to changes in temperature, and it physically tires you out. People who exercise report better sleep than those who don’t, so perhaps its time to jump on the bandwagon?
Please note that not all sleep problems can be easily fixed and some may require professional advice or medication, so if problems persist, speak to your doctor.