How to Get More Sleep

How to Get More Sleep

So, you know the importance of getting enough sleep, but how do you get there? It’s not always easy to fall asleep at a regular hour, especially for those people who find their minds wandering as soon as the lights go out. However, finding enough time to sleep is one of the best things you can do for yourself. Instead of throwing your hands up and assuming that there’s no way to turn your poor sleep situation around, keep these tips in mind.

  • Reduce screen time in the hours before bed. Specialists say the blue light associated with electronic devices has the ability to disrupt your circadian rhythm and restrict the production of melatonin, making it harder to fall asleep.
  • Dedicate your bed to sleep. Many people use their beds for activities outside of sleeping, like studying and watching TV. However, if you want your brain to associate bedtime with sleeping time, cut down on outside use.
  • Get comfy. It’s always harder to sleep when you’re not in the right environment. Instead of skimping on bedding, invest in plush pillows, high-quality sheets, and a cozy duvet to make your bed as appealing as possible.
  • Lower the temperature. When your body is getting ready to sleep, your body temperature naturally lowers around one to two degrees. By keeping your bedroom on the cooler side, you can get a jumpstart on this process.
  • Cut out caffeine. Cutting out that post-lunch cup of coffee can feel almost impossible when the mid-afternoon slump kicks in, but try to stick to decaf. Caffeine has a half-life of around five hours, keeping you alert for a long time and potentially interrupting your sleep.
  • Stick to a schedule. Sleeping in on Saturday and Sunday may feel like bliss, but it could be affecting your sleep during the work week. Rather than staying up late on the weekends and enjoying a lie-in til noon, try to create a consistent schedule so that your body is used to your weeknight habits.

Getting plenty of sleep is a critical part of living your best life, affecting everything from your beach bod to your cardiovascular health. If you commit to anything in the New Year, let healthy sleeping habits be the gift that keeps on giving.

Better Sleep Tips from Haven Sleep

Better Sleep Tips from Haven Sleep

We’ve all been there: you hit the pillow, exhausted from a long day, and sleep just doesn’t come. You toss, you turn, you reposition yourself to try to get comfortable, you flip your pillow back and forth in search of the cold side, but it’s all for nothing – the great night’s sleep you crave isn’t happening.

Unfortunately, a poor sleeping experience isn’t anything new. Around one-third of people ages 18 to 64 get less than seven hours of sleep on average. As a whole, the demographic averaged just 7.12 hours, barely breaking into the recommended seven to nine hours. Quality of sleep suffers as well; 43% of men and 55% of women report trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep.

So, what can you do? How can you make sure you’re getting enough sleep, and getting good sleep to boot? From great mattress to a solid bedtime routine, here’s what you need to know about the road to a better night’s sleep.

What Sleep Can do for you

What Sleep Can do for you

Sleep feels great, especially after a long day, but it’s also a big part of living a healthy and productive life. Whether you realize it or not, getting enough sleep can make a huge difference in your life, driving successful weight loss, lower stress levels, and so much more.

Improved Productivity

We’ve all been there – after a rough night with only a few hours of sleep, you find yourself downing cup after cup of coffee in an effort to stay awake. Your brain feels like it’s in a fog, and answering even simple questions can seem akin to climbing Mount Everest.

No matter how determined you are to succeed, productivity hits a slump when you’re underslept. Critical thinking skills diminish, word finding increases, and decision-making suffers. As a lack of sleep continues, these side effects worsen, leading to compromised job performance, problems at school, and even relationship challenges. Bottom line? If you’re not getting at least seven hours of quality sleep each night, your productivity is at risk.

Increased Likelihood of Weight Loss

Feel like you’ve packed on the pounds and all the careful calorie counting and exercise in the world doesn’t make a difference? Try getting more sleep.

Even if staying up a little later to squeeze in more exercise seems compelling, the real value in losing weight may lie in the bedroom. When you’re exhausted and not functioning at full capacity, you’re at risk for making worse lifestyle choices out of desperation, like picking up fast food instead of cooking a filling meal. Further, the decreased productivity experienced when underslept can affect your exercise, sending you to the couch rather than to the gym.

If seeing the numbers on the scale decrease is a goal, focus your energy on more time in bed.

Reduced Stress

Stress and anxiety run the show for most adults, from financial stressors at home to performance pressure at work. Unfortunately, failing to get enough shut-eye only makes things worse. A lack of sleep can make it harder to relax and process challenging situations; the pre-frontal cortex doesn’t function up to par when you’re fatigued, leaving you unable to make smart decisions and potentially increasing the problems you’re up against in all aspects of life.

Going to bed with only a limited time to sleep can also cause stress, piling on more pressure. When this kind of sleepless trend continues over a long period of time, you may fall into a vicious cycle of fatigue and stress that’s almost impossible to escape.

Decreased Health Risks

A lack of sleep can feel bad in the moment, but the ramifications in the long term can add up to something a lot more serious. Inadequate sleep has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, certain types of cancer, and stroke as well as a heightened likelihood of developing Type 2 diabetes.

Health risks aren’t all physical, either – mental health and sleep are directly linked. A few bad weeks or months can cause depression and anxiety, creating a negative environment that has the ability to spill into many other areas of your life.

At the end of the day, the better you sleep, the healthier you are.