You’ll be snoring before you know it.
In our fast-paced, need-it-now disposable income world, when we want something, we typically acquire it quickly.
The one thing most of us want – and need – more than ever though, continues to evade us. We’re talking of course, about sleep. Studies show most of us are getting less than six hours of it a night, and that’s just not enough to touch the sides.
Even if you claim to be content with getting just a handful of hours’ shut-eye, the health consequences of continually racking up under six hours a night (heart disease, weight gain, raised stress hormones and accelerated ageing, to name a few) are scary enough to make you think again.
Thankfully, there are some simple things you can do, starting tonight, to fall asleep faster and stay in Dreamland longer…
1. Make friends with carbs
Research has found that eating a small carb-filled snack about half an hour before bed can help you drift off faster, thanks to the feelgood hormones carbs help release. Heavy meals before bed have the opposite effect though, so keep it to around 200 calories, something like a piece of buttered toast or a banana is ideal.
2. Save it for the two ‘S’s
Sleep and sex are the only two things your bedroom should be used for. If you’re someone who spends a lot of time studying, watching TV, or lip-synching to Beyonce songs in your room, you need to move it to the living room. Anything other than the two ‘s’s can cause the brain to link that part of your house to stimulation, making it incredibly difficult for it to power down come bedtime. To really amp up the relaxation factor of your room, you can also make some super easy tweaks to the space that’ll promote calm.
3. Get up
This one might seem counterintuitive, but if you’re someone who wakes up during the night, and you aren’t able to fall back asleep within 20 minutes, get up and do something to distract yourself – like reading – from going into a meltdown that it’s only three more hours till you have to be up for work, which will only cause cortisol (the stress hormone) to spike, keeping you awake longer. Conversely, distracting yourself with a task when you wake up has been found to help insomniacs wind back down. It won’t be long before you’re yawning again.
Images via tumblr.com and giphy.com.
Comment: What techniques help you fall, and stay, asleep?