If you’re here, than like most, modern society is demanding more and more of your time throughout the day, and you’re finding it hard to get in those most needed Zzz’s. Don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place, here’s our list of ten techniques to help you get to sleep faster, stay asleep longer, and get that desired rest you deserve.
Having a healthy sleep routine, like going to bed at the same time every night, can help your brain form the habit of switching into sleep mode by releasing the hormone, melatonin, that helps us sleep.
That said, it can take time to figure out the most effective sleep schedule that works with your lifestyle, they key is to adjust your schedule over time, and stay consistent.
Physical activity not only helps regulate heart rate, blood pressure, offset chronic pain, build muscle and regulate body fat, but exercise can also positively impact sleep quality.
Whether you’re completing moderate or high-intensity workouts, if done earlier in the day, exercise can induce a deeper level of sleep allowing the body to repair itself.
Deep, rhythmic breathing is a fundamental building block for many meditative techniques and yoga practices. Focusing on the breath promotes relaxation throughout the body.
A breathing technique known as 4-7-8 breathing, follows a 4-7-8 second count pattern. Follow along with Harvard trained Dr. Andrew Weill, as he guides you through this technique…
The more you practice breathing techniques, like 4-7-8, the easier it will be to tap into a deeper sense of relaxation whenever you need it.
As the use of smartphones and screens continue to take up more and more of our wakeful hours, it is crucial to set aside these devices before getting into bed. Scientific research has uncovered a connection between blue light (a specific type of artificial light given off by electronics) and increased levels of alertness in people.
So instead of scrolling through your favourite social media sites or forums before bed, why not set aside your device and pick up a book instead?
Speaking of light, bathing the body in sunlight is an essential part of keeping our inner clock working. The twenty-four-hour clock is not just for keeping military time, or regular time if you’re European, it is part of the body’s ability to regulate its sleep-wake cycle known as the circadian rhythm.
This inner, twenty-four-hour clock takes its cues from various aspects in a person’s life—immersion of light and darkness being the most influential. Exposing yourself to natural light during the day helps that body stay alert, while dousing yourself in darkness at night can induce sleepiness.
Weighted blankets were first developed as a tool by occupational therapists to help people with ADHD, Autism, PTSD, and other sensory disorders. This is because they use something called deep pressure stimulation to create a chemical reaction in the body.
These blankets have been outfitted with tiny, ground glass beads that have been secured between folds of fabric. It is this added weight that creates this deep pressure, mimicking the feeling of hug. Sleeping with one at night is known to treat insomnia, helping people to relax the body and calm the mind.
With its recent development, many are advocating this sound wave therapy to treat anxiety, stress, and insomnia. There is still much to discover harnessing sound waves to induce positive effects in the body and mind, but many turn to music to help induce a sense of relaxation, so its worth a try!
Eat an earlier dinner to ensure adequate digestion time for your body. If you are hungry right before bed, avoid eating heavy carbs and instead grab a handful of nuts. Almonds and walnuts contain melatonin, which helps regulate that sleep-wake cycle. If nuts are a no go, opt for raspberries instead, as they also contain this hormone. For more information on sleep-inducing foods, check out this article on the best and worst bedtime food.
As there are hundreds of yoga poses to try, there are many types of routines that can zone in on various physical and mental health problems. Individuals that have insomnia, due to an overactive mind or physical issue, could benefit significantly by performing yoga routines before bed.
If you are unsure where to start, Yoga with Adriene offers many videos of routines online, like this Bedtime Yoga Routine below.