Having a good night’s sleep on a regular basis is vital for good health. It is during sleep that our bodies take the time to grow, renew and repair. A lack of quality sleep will do more than just leave you feeling tired, it will also cause you to feel weak, disoriented, and depressed. Ultimately, this could lower your ability to fight infections and leave you more susceptible to illness.
In addition to getting enough sleep, you also need to be aware of whether or not you are getting good, quality sleep. When you wake up, you should feel refreshed and full of energy that will allow you to tackle the day ahead. If you find yourself waking up frequently throughout the night and constantly tossing and turning, then you might need to make some changes to your sleeping habits before your start to experience more permanent side effects.
When examining the factors that might be negatively affecting your sleep, the most obvious place to start is by taking a look at your bedroom and you bed:
1. Is your bed comfortable and does your mattress support your back and muscles adequately?
2. Do you have curtains or blinds over the windows, and if so do they block out daylight to stop the sun from interrupting your sleep?
3. Are you affected by noise, or is your bedroom too hot or cold?
All of these things can disturb your sleep and prevent you from gaining the proper rest that you need.
Certain foods and drinks can also impact sleep quality. If you’re experiencing insomnia, try to reduce your intake of stimulants like coffee, tea, energy drinks and chocolate, especially in the hours leading up to your bed time. Don’t eat your evening meal too close to bedtime either so that you have time to properly digest your food. If you’ve ever noticed that you sleep poorly after a night on the town, you’ll also know that alcohol and drugs can interfere with your body’s ability to rest properly. Limit alcohol consumption and experience more restorative sleep.
Many people find it beneficial to take some exercise, such as a brisk walk or a short run, a few hours before bedtime. This will not only help to make you tired, but is also a great way of relieving stress. We often underestimate the effects that stress can have on our lives, and if we do not deal with it appropriately, it can contribute to sleeplessness, tension headaches, muscular aches and pains and feelings of depression. Many people also find that taking a warm bath, or even soaking in a hydrotherapy walk in bathtub, is a great way to relieve these physical symptoms of stress, allowing you to relax before bedtime for an optimal night’s sleep. By eliminating factors that interrupt your sleep and finding an ideal method of relaxation, you can improve your quality of sleep and your health.