Don’t set aside more than eight hours to sleep. Pay attention to what you eat and drink. Don’t go to bed hungry or stuffed. Keep your room cool, dark and quiet.
Include physical activity in your daily routine. Research shows that poor sleep has immediate negative effects on hormones, exercise performance and brain function (1, 2, 3, 4,. Conversely, sleeping well can help you eat less, exercise better, and be healthier (2, 8, 9,. Over the past few decades, both the quality and quantity of sleep have declined.
In fact, many people regularly sleep poorly (11, 1). Here are 17 evidence-based tips for better sleep at night. Your body has a natural timekeeping clock known as a circadian rhythm (13, 1). It affects the brain, body and hormones, helping you stay awake and telling your body when it’s time to sleep (14, 1) Natural sunlight or bright daylight helps keep your circadian rhythm healthy.
This improves energy during the day, as well as the quality and duration of nighttime sleep (16, 17, 1). In people with insomnia, exposure to bright light during the day improves sleep quality and duration. It also reduced the time it took to fall asleep by 83% (1). A similar study in older adults found that 2 hours of exposure to bright light during the day increased the amount of sleep in 2 hours and sleep efficiency by 80% (20).
Exposure to light during the day is beneficial, but exposure to night light has the opposite effect (21, 2). Again, this is due to its effect on the circadian rhythm, tricking the brain into thinking it’s still daytime. This reduces hormones such as melatonin, which help you relax and sleep soundly (23, 2). Blue light tricks your body into thinking it’s daytime.
There are several ways to reduce exposure to blue light at night. Caffeine has numerous benefits and is consumed by 90% of the U.S. UU. Population (26, 27, 28, 29, 30).
A single dose can improve concentration, energy and athletic performance (31, 32, 3.Caffeine consumption up to 6 hours before bedtime significantly worsened sleep quality in one study (3). Caffeine can stay elevated in the blood for 6 to 8 hours. Therefore, drinking large quantities of coffee after 3—4 p.m. Not recommended, especially if you are sensitive to caffeine or have trouble sleeping (31, 3).
Sleeping during the day can confuse your internal clock, which means you may struggle to sleep at night (36, 3.In fact, in one study, participants ended up sleeping more during the day after taking naps during the day (3). you take naps during the day and sleep well, you don’t have to worry. The effects of a nap depend on the person (39, 40, 4). Being consistent with your sleep and wakefulness can help long-term sleep quality (4).
One study found that participants who had irregular sleep patterns and went to bed late on weekends reported poor sleep (4). that irregular sleep patterns can alter circadian rhythm and melatonin levels, prompting the brain to sleep (43, 44, 4). Melatonin is a key sleep hormone that tells the brain when it’s time to relax and go to bed (4). Often used to treat insomnia, melatonin may be one of the easiest ways to fall asleep faster (47, 4) In one study, taking 2 mg of melatonin before bedtime improved sleep quality and energy the next day and helped people fall asleep faster.
In another study, half of the group fell asleep faster and had a 15% improvement in sleep quality (48, 4). It also alters nighttime melatonin production, which plays a key role in the body’s circadian rhythm (72, 73, 74, 7.Other studies reveal that increasing body and bedroom temperatures can lower sleep quality). and increase wakefulness (82, 83, 84, 85, 86, 8.Around 70° F (20° C) seems to be a pleasant temperature for most people, although it depends on their preferences and habits. Test different temperatures to find out which is the most comfortable for you.
Around 70°F (20°C) is best for most people. Eating late at night can negatively affect both sleep quality and natural release of HGH and melatonin (88, 89, 90, 91, 9) In one study, a high-carbohydrate meal eaten 4 hours before bedtime helped people fall asleep faster (9). Studies indicate that they can help improve overall sleep quality and help people, especially older adults, fall asleep faster (99, 100, 101, 102, 10). Alternatively, if you don’t want to take a full bath at night, simply bathing your feet in warm water can help you relax and improve your sleep (102, 10).
A common problem is sleep apnea, which causes irregular and interrupted breathing. People with this disorder stop breathing repeatedly while they sleep (104, 10). This condition may be more common than you think. A review stated that 24% of men and 9% of women have sleep apnea (10).
In addition to the relaxing environment, the quality of the bed can also affect sleep (109, 1). A study looked at the benefits of a new mattress for 28 days, revealing that it reduced back pain by 57%, shoulder pain by 60% and back stiffness by 59%. It also improved sleep quality by 60% (11). Other studies show that new bedding can improve sleep.
In addition, poor quality bedding can lead to increased low back pain (112, 11). The best mattress and bedding are extremely subjective. If you are going to change your bedding, base your choice on your personal preferences (113, 114, 115, 116, 11). If you haven’t changed your mattress or bedding for several years, this solution can be very quick, but possibly costly (11).
It can improve all aspects of sleep and has been used to reduce symptoms of insomnia (118, 119, 120, 121, 12.For people with severe insomnia, exercise offered more benefits than most medications. Exercise reduced time to fall asleep by 55%, total nighttime wakefulness by 30%, and anxiety by 15%, while increasing total sleep time by 18% (12). However, some studies show no negative effects, so it clearly depends on the person (124, 125, 12). Nocturia is the medical term for excessive urination during the night.
Affects sleep quality and energy during the day (127, 12) Try not to drink any liquids 1 or 2 hours before bedtime. A large review linked insufficient sleep to an 89% increase in the risk of obesity in children and 55% in adults (12). Other studies conclude that sleeping less than 7 to 8 hours a night increases the risk of developing heart disease and type 2 diabetes (130, 131, 13). These 13 picks are some of the best king-size mattresses money can buy.
We all have trouble sleeping from time to time, but when insomnia persists day after day, it can become a real problem. Beyond making us feel tired and moody, lack of sleep can have serious effects on our health, increasing our propensity for obesity, heart disease and type 2 diabetes. Taking a daily brisk walk will not only trim you, but will also keep you awake less often at night. Exercise increases the effect of natural sleep hormones, such as melatonin.
A study published in the journal Sleep found that postmenopausal women who exercised for about three and a half hours a week had an easier time falling asleep than women who exercised less frequently. Just watch the time of your workouts. Exercising too close to bedtime can be stimulating. Morning workouts that expose you to daylight will help you with the natural circadian rhythm.
Bills add up and your to-do list is a mile long. Daytime worries can surface at night. Activates fight or flight hormones that work against sleep. Give yourself time to relax before going to sleep.
Learning some form of the relaxation response can promote good sleep and can also reduce anxiety during the day. To relax, try deep breathing exercises. Inhale slowly and deeply, and then exhale. Get helpful tips and guidance for everything from fighting inflammation to finding the best diets for weight loss, from exercises to strengthen your abdomen to advice on treating cataracts.
PLUS, the latest news on medical breakthroughs and breakthroughs from Harvard Medical School experts. Rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder, or REM, is another condition that can make it more difficult to sleep well at night. Most importantly, you’ll learn what you can do to sleep, what you need to achieve optimal health, safety, and well-being. If you feel tired and unable to do your activities for more than 2 or 3 weeks, you may have trouble sleeping.
However, in reality, the period leading up to bedtime plays a crucial role in preparing you to fall asleep quickly and effortlessly. The need to move your legs, snoring, and burning pain in the stomach, chest, or throat are symptoms of three common sleep disorders: restless legs syndrome, sleep apnea, and gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. Changing these habits can take time, but the effort can pay off by making you more relaxed and ready to fall asleep when it’s time to sleep. If you are interested in optimal health and well-being, it is recommended that you make sleep a top priority and incorporate some of the above tips.
However, some studies show that those who are used to taking naps during the day regularly do not experience poor sleep quality or sleep disorders at night. These medications can help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer, but they can also have side effects. One of the inspirations behind the launch of Sleep by Headspace was that many Headspace members said they practiced meditation at night, even before bedtime, to help them de-stress and fall asleep. You should also talk to them if you are thinking of using melatonin as a sleep aid for your child, as the long-term use of this supplement in children has not been well studied.
A study published in the British Medical Journal associated several hypnotic sleep aids, such as zolpidem (Ambien) and temazepam (Restoril), with a possible increased risk of death (although it could not confirm how much of the risk was related to these drugs). . .