As humans, we spend a great deal of time sleeping throughout our lives, and with good reason too. The average person who sleeps 8 hours a night will have spent 229,961 hours asleep through their lifetime. That ends up being about one-third of your life! Sleep is an incredibly crucial part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and without it, your body will start to struggle keeping up with the demands of daily life.
The benefits of getting a good night’s rest are practically endless, but there are a couple that really make the difference between feeling like your on top of the world, or feeling like your body is one big walking sandbag. One benefit is for your brains health, which remains very active while you sleep, sorting memories and experiences, and removing toxins from your brain. Sleep also gives your body the chance to recuperate from the day before, heal damaged cells, and reduce inflammation. Without a good night’s rest your body is missing out on some absolutely crucial chances to prepare for the next day, and to keep your body and mind as healthy as possible.
So what are some ways you can make sure you get a good night’s rest? Luckily the answers to this are almost as numerous as the benefits that come from using these tips.
One way you can make sure to get a good night’s rest, is to maintain a consistent sleep schedule. Our bodies contain biological clocks and rhythms that schedule certain events and processes in our body, which rely heavily on a consistent sleep schedule, meaning going to sleep and waking up at the same time each day, give or take about 30 minutes.
Another way is to be aware of certain activities or things you do in the time leading up to going to sleep. Activities like intense physical exercise, using electronic devices with screens and monitors, should be kept to a minimum in the hours leading up to bedtime. These activities stimulate your body and mind, therefore affecting your ability to fall asleep, as well as affecting the quality of sleep. Instead try activities like reading a book in low light, or meditating, which are much more calming on the body and mind.
Your diet also plays a role in how you sleep. Try to avoid spicy foods or caffeinated beverages within a few hours of bedtime, as these can have similar effects to the activities mentioned above. Foods like nuts and cottage cheese contain hormones and amino acids that can be beneficial to your sleep. Also bedtime teas like chamomile can help you relax before bed.
Another important factor is the environment your sleeping in. Your bed can have a huge impact on how you sleep, and make the difference between waking up well rested, or being sore and tired all over. If you think your mattress is keeping you from getting the rest you need, think about looking at a new mattress, maybe made from a different material, or one that offers a different type of support you haven’t tried before.
Also the light, or the lack of light you are exposed to during sleep can have an impact. Try to keep your area as dark as possible while asleep, to prevent any light interference during your rest, while ideally allowing the natural sunlight to enter when the day starts to help you wake up in the morning and prevent oversleeping.
Follow these simple tips and you’ll be well on your way to getting the full nights rest you deserve!