Adequate sleep is a big factor in staying healthy. Better Sleep Month, which is in May, encourages us to make better sleep patterns for ourselves. Better Sleep Month is supported by the Better Sleep Council, which aims to raise awareness about the benefits of better sleep and how poor sleep can be disruptive to our lives. As with diet and exercise, sleep is crucial to our physical, emotional and mental health.
Here are 5 simple steps you can follow for a better nights rest.
- Don’t eat or drink (alcohol) too much before bed time: A full stomach keeps your body working when it should be sleeping. Alcohol, meanwhile, may help you fall asleep, but once its ingredients wear off it can wake you up and leave you wide awake.
- Have a nighttime routine (and stick to it): If you have children they most likely follow a bedtime schedule and so should we as adults. Instead of turning on your television at night, try reading or taking a nice bath. Both of these things can relax you and doing the same thing at the same time every night tells your body it’s time to go into sleep mode.
- Stick to your schedule: This can get difficult with our everyday, busy lives. However getting the same amount of sleep every night leads to a much more rested one.
- Temperature is key: Your bedroom should be between 60-68 degrees for optimal rest.
- Proper bedding: Ensuring that your bedding is replaced regularly and appropriate for your needs. This may be the best change you can make to help you sleep better. Be sure to change your pillow once every year. If your mattress is old and you can’t afford a new one, a high quality mattress topper can help extend its life.
Many experts believe that between 7.5 and 8.5 hours of sleep a night is optimal. However, 6 hours of deep refreshing sleep is more beneficial than 8 or 9 interrupted hours. Either way, better sleep is quality sleep. For more information on Better Sleep Month, visit the Better Sleep Council Website.