A good night’s sleep is important for both our health and wellbeing. Rested, we feel ready to take on the world. But it’s not always easy drifting off to sleep.
In fact, we’ve all been there: lying in bed, middle of the night, eyes wide open, mind racing. Or even eyes shut tight, desperately counting sheep, trying to ignore the fact we need to be up for work in four hours.
But do not fear, we have some tips to help make sure that, when it comes to lights out, you can slip into a blissful slumber. Here are some suggestions to help you sleep better:
Get as much daylight as possible. Your body has a natural clock that makes us feel more awake and energetic during daylight hours, and tells us that when it gets dark it’s time for bed. So make sure you make the most of the day by getting out and about.
Make time for consistent, light exercise. In addition to having health benefits, physical exercise can help relieve stress and tire you out. So try taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or parking at the far end of the parking lot. Exercise is one of the best ways to help you sleep better.
Limit your exposure to blue light in the evenings. Phones, tablets and laptops all emit a particular kind of blue light that can stop you feeling sleepy. So put down your devices at least half an hour before you go to bed and give yourself plenty of time to switch off.
Reduce your caffeine intake. Bit of a no-brainer this one. Caffeine isn’t great for sleep. So why not try herbal tea, which is naturally caffeine-free? You could also switch to decaffeinated tea after lunch. Some great options are: Serenity, Lemon Ginger and Green Tea Decaffeinated (more on this later).
Avoid alcohol. There’s no two ways about it; alcohol and a great night’s sleep don’t mix. Even a couple of alcoholic drinks or a nightcap might help you fall to sleep quicker, but it can disrupt the quality of sleep you get during the course of the night so you’re more likely to wake up feeling groggy and not particularly refreshed.
Don’t eat late. In an ideal world, you need to allow three hours for your body to digest food before turning in for the night, so eat as early as you can.
Stick to a routine. Your body has a natural rhythm, so go to bed at a regular time and try to get up at the same time every day too. This means sacrificing that weekend sleep-in and limiting naps to power naps so you don't confuse your body’s internal clock.
Introduce a sleep ritual. Whether it's indulging in a relaxing bath, reading a book in bed, ordering your thoughts for the next day by writing a list, or simply sipping the Lipton(R) Serenity blended with chamomile, try different methods to see what works best to help you unwind.
Design a sleep sanctuary. Make your bedroom a calm and sleep-friendly place. Nice lighting, no clutter or mess, and maybe even opt for neutral colours if you can. Scented candles can also help.
The right bed, mattress and pillows. Make sure they’re all soft or supportive enough depending on your preference. There’s nothing like a comfy bed to help you sleep better.