[Ilovemyshape.com] Practicing sleep hygiene may sound unimaginative to some people. However, it actually makes a big difference between a restful slumber and restlessness. Having a good night’s sleep isn’t beyond your reach as you may think. Experts have acknowledged a variety of habits and practices —called sleep hygiene which may just be the best way to get the sleep you need.
Below are some simple tips on how to get rid of insomnia naturally. Try these to help improve your sleep and also increase your sleeping hours, even when affected by shift work or sleep disorder.
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Learn How To Get Rid Of Insomnia Naturally
1. Go to Sleep When You’re Truly Tired
Trying so hard to fall asleep leads to even more frustration. When you are in bed and you find that you are still not asleep after 20 minutes, simply get out of bed and go do something relaxing in another room, like listening to music or reading until you are tired enough to sleep.
2. Turn Your Bedroom into A Sleep-Inducing Environment
A cool, dark, and quiet environment helps in promoting sound sleep. Think about why bats prefer to sleep in caves during the day. You can create a similar environment in your bedroom by using either a white noise appliance or earplugs to lower the volume of noise which may come from outside. Bright light can stimulate your internal clock so keep the lights in your bedroom dim. Use heavy curtains, an eye mask or blackout shades to block any light that prompts the brain to wake up. Make sure your room is well ventilated and comfortably cool — at least keep the temperature between 60 and 75°F. Moreover, ensure that you equip your bedroom with comfortable pillows and mattress. Consider keeping your pet out of your bedroom if it regularly wakes you up from your sleep. You will need to strengthen the psychological association between sleep and your bedroom by keeping work materials, computers, radios, and, TVs, out of your room. This will help in limiting your activities in the bedroom to only sex and sleep.
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3. Don’t Be A Night-time Clock-Watcher
When you are trying to fall asleep, staring at your bedroom clock, can actually increase you stress, and make it difficult for you to sleep. Face away from your clock or vice versa whenever you are trying to sleep or when you wake up in the middle of the night. Again if you are unable to get back to sleep after waking up in the middle of the night, get up and engage in a restful, quiet activity for about 20 minutes, such as listening to music till you feel sleepy. You can also read silently to yourself till your eyelids start drooping – then you can return to bed.
4. Keep A Consistent Sleep Schedule To Set Your Internal Clock
Having a regular a time for sleeping promotes consistent and better quality sleep. When you go to sleep and wake up at regular times every day, it sets your body’s internal clock to anticipate sleep at a particular time every night. Avoid the Monday morning sleep hangover by sticking to your weekend schedules as much as possible. The very best way to set your internal clock is waking up at regular times. Even if you were not able to get a better sleep during the previous night, you will be able to consolidate the previous night’s sleep with the following night’s to give you an extra sleep drive. Keep reading to learn more on how to get rid of insomnia naturally.
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5. Nap Early—Or Not At All
Some people make naps part of their daily routine. However, afternoon napping may be one of the key factors preventing you from being able to sleep at night. The reason being that, late-day naps actually reduce one’s drive to sleep at night. If you must nap, do it before 5 p.m. and keep it short.
6. Avoid Nicotine And Caffeine
Caffeinated products reduce your sleep quality. If you drink coffee a lot, then you are already aware of the fact that coffee keeps you awake. It contains caffeine which is a stimulant. If you really want a good night’s sleep, stay away from coffee or products which contain caffeine – such as tea, coffee, cola, chocolate, and some pain relievers. If you would have to take them, at least it shouldn’t be close to bedtime. Likewise, if you are a smoker, avoid using any tobacco product between 4 to 6 hours before going to sleep.
Alcohol, although may help to induce sleep, can actually act as a stimulant after a few hours. This generally decreases the quality of sleep later in the night and increase the number of awakenings. Try and avoid drinking close to your bed time – at least not before 3 or four hours to sleep and limit your consumption of alcohol to one or two glasses a day or even less.
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7. Balance Fluid Intake
To avoid waking up thirsty, try drinking enough water at night. This however, doesn’t have to be so close to bedtime and so much so that you feel the need to awake during the night to use the bathroom.
8. Lighten Up On Evening Meals
Eating a big meal close to your sleeping time at night may be a recipe for insomnia. Avoid foods that may cause indigestion and finish your dinner at least 4 to 6 hours before you go to sleep. If you get hungry at night, eat a very light food or something that won’t interfere with your sleep. Perhaps carbohydrates and dairy foods will do.
9. Exercise Early
Looking for more ways on how to get rid of insomnia naturally? Try exercising early. Exercise when done several hours prior to bedtime promotes a restful sleep. Exercise can help you sleep more soundly and fall asleep faster —you just need to do it at the appropriate time. Exercise stimulates the secretion of cortisol – the stress hormone in the body, that helps in activating the brain’s alerting mechanism. Although this is ok, it can hinder your sleep sometimes. Work out earlier during the day and try as much as possible to finish exercising at least 3 hours before going to sleep.
10. Establish A Soothing Pre-Sleep Routine
Prepare yourself for sleep by doing light reading before bedtime. Fill the period between your wake-up time and sleep time with relaxing activities at least an hour before you go to sleep. Take a bath to encourage drowsiness, practice relaxation exercises, read a book, or watch television. Avoid discussing emotional issues, doing work, or engaging in other stressful activities — psychological and physically stressful activities stimulate secretion of the stress hormone cortisol in the body. This hormone is responsible for increasing alertness.
Do not go to bed with your problems. Thinking about your problems whiles in bed, may prevent you from sleeping. You can, try writing your problems down—and then put them aside before you sleep. This will keep you from thinking about them whiles in bed.
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11. Take Advantage Of Light
You can keep your body on a healthy sleep-wake cycle with natural light. The first thing you need to do in the morning after waking up is to let in the light. During the day, you can also take a sun break out of your office.
The Bottom Line
It will be easy to add some of these tips to your day and night routine than others. However, when you follow them, it will help to your sleep dream a reality. In fact, not all sleep problems can be easily treated. When you practice these sleep hygiene methods and your sleep doesn’t improve, consult a sleep specialist or your physician.
Do you have any ideas on how to get rid of insomnia naturally? I Love My Shape and its readers would be more than happy to know. Share them with us.