There are plenty of reasons why we might struggle to sleep at night. Some are simply bad habits that can ruin sleep, while others are things that are more circumstantial. The stresses and worries of the day may weigh heavily on our minds, causing us to lie awake fretting over them. Journalling these things before we go to bed may release us of those thoughts before we turn the light outs. We may be suffering from an acute health problem, perhaps with aches, pains, and difficulty breathing. If this is the case for you, talk to your doctor. You may need medication to help you sleep better. Our mattress may not be fit for purpose. It could be uncomfortable to sleep on, or it might trigger an allergy. Replacing it with a non-toxic mattress may be the answer. However, there are also bad habits that we can fall into, and these may be responsible for damaging our sleep patterns.
Drinking Too Much Caffeine
You probably know that caffeine can keep you awake at night, so you may have already replaced it with something else as your night-time drink. However, experts suggest we should stop drinking caffeine after 2 pm, as it can remain in our system for up to 10 hours.
Having a Nightcap
A glass of wine will help you to fall asleep, but experts suggest any kind of alcohol can disrupt our sleep during the night. It causes us to wake earlier than we should. The cutoff point for alcohol should be between 2-3 hours before you go to bed.
Sitting in Bed With Your Phone
Scrolling through your Facebook feed on your phone before you hit the pillow will not help your sleep pattern. And neither will using any kind of device: your TV, laptop or tablet. Experts have found the blue light emitting from screened devices can disrupt our sleep hormones making it difficult for us to nod off. Turn off your screens an hour before bed, and sit in bed with a book instead of your smartphone.
The occasional afternoon nap is fine, especially if your body needs it. But don’t let it become a regular thing. The reason why you’re napping in the first place is probably that you haven’t had enough sleep at night. And if you nap too often, you are going to feel less tired at night. Getting your sleep pattern back into form is your priority, so if you do start to feel tired in the day, perhaps engage in exercise out in the fresh air to energize your system.
Eating a Late Night Snack
Have you ever found yourself standing in front of the fridge at night eating cold pizza or leftover pie? Certain foods will negatively affect your sleeping patterns, such as pasta, pizza, and the examples given here. If you do feel hunger pangs before bedtime, eat foods which sleep-inducing melatonin, such as a banana, a bowl of oats, or a spoonful of honey.
Habits That Can Ruin Sleep
So, if you have been struggling to sleep, consider whether your bad habits are the problem. If so, cut them out, and get into better habits to help you get all the beauty sleep you need at night. When you’re aware of the habits that can ruin sleep, you can make more of an effort to replace them.
Want more tips on healthy living? Be sure to check out this post for more tips!