Lifestyle News

Lifestyle News

Lifestyle News

If we’re being honest, there are so many reasons why you might not be sleeping enough at night. It could be a symptom of something you’re experiencing physically, mentally, or even emotionally. Because all three of these parts of your well-being can affect your sleep.

As a whole, Americans need more z’s. The American Sleep Association says adults need seven to nine hours of rest at night, but roughly one out of every three people get less than seven hours. And that’s consistent! Which is yes, very bad for you.

In college and even my life post-college, that’s one thing I learned very quickly: do not underestimate the importance of sleep. Really, it’s what keeps you sane. And it’s what keeps you you. HuffPost reports that a deficiency of rest has effects on your physical health, mental health, feeling of safety, and overall quality of life.

You might be experiencing sleep onset insomnia which is when you have trouble actually relaxing and falling asleep. Or you could be experiencing sleep maintenance insomnia, which is when you have trouble staying asleep.

So, use some of these tips provided by the American Sleep Association and published by HuffPost. Do you have a bedtime ritual? It might be time you start using one to help…

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  • 1. Limit screen time before bed

    You might’ve heard before that the blue light that comes from our electronics can stimulate the brain and keep it awake. That’s because it suppresses the release of melatonin, which is the brain chemical necessary for sleep. It also regulates your circadian rhythm, which is essentially your body’s 24-hour clock. Limiting your exposure to blue light right before bed can help with this release of melatonin.

  • 2. Avoid having the TV on while you fall asleep

    Some people might find it comforting to sleep with the TV noise in the background. I get it. I understand because I can’t sleep in complete silence or else my thoughts will go wild and actually keep me up. But with the TV comes the same problem with blue light. It suppresses this melatonin that you need to fall asleep. If you need sound though, I would highly suggest getting a white noise machine. Or getting a really loud fan.

  • 3. Avoid lots of social interaction right before bed

    HuffPost says lots of social interaction before bed keeps us up. This includes engaging on social media. Social media can also lead to negative thoughts and the inescapable comparison you make between yourself and others you see online. Seems like TikTok time might not be as relaxing as you think it is.

  • 4. Don't work from your bed at any time of the day

    Working from your bed, meaning even just checking email, can mentally leave no boundary between rest and work. This happens because when you work, you are supposed to be alert and of course conscious. But doing that from place you’re supposed to be resting can send your brain mixed signals which can subconsciously lead to both less productivity doing work as well as problems falling asleep.

  • 5. Avoid coffee and alcohol right before bed

    This one seems like a no brainer, but you might not know the exact limits of it. Experts say you shouldn’t drink coffee or soda or any energy drinks less than 6 hours before going to bed. You really shouldn’t drink anything with caffeine past early afternoon. So it might be best to avoid that 3:30 coffee break. Drink water or eat some fruit instead to keep you awake during a lull time in the afternoon. Also, alcohol can first lead to more restroom breaks in the middle of the night. It also does make you sleepy, but experts say it disallows you from falling into deeper stages of sleep so you’re less likely to stay asleep after drinking alcohol.

  • 6. Avoid exercising right before bed

    While your body might feel tired after exercising, it’s not too good to exercise right before bed. This is because exercise releases endorphins, which mentally keeps you feeling wired. It is really great to exercise during the day because it absolutely helps regulate your sleep, tire out your body, and decompress your mind for sleep. But doing it riiiight before bed might actually keep you restless.

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