You know that feeling when you can’t fall asleep because you are truly, madly and deeply in love. Insomnia is exactly that just without any love. You just can’t fall asleep and you don’t know why. I’ve had my insomnia days and I know exactly how much it sucks to just lie on the bed doing absolutely nothing. Okay, not nothing exactly! You build up a million imaginary things in your head, overthink about things that in all probability won’t even happen, toss and turn in your bedsheet, hum a lullaby to yourself and all of that. But let’s face it, these ‘night time- no sleep activities’ will take you nowhere. 1 in 3 people have mild insomnia and chances are that you’re reading this because you are the one.
Luckily, I have a couple of hours to spare before I crash on my heavenly bed and I want to ensure that both of us benefit from it. So here I am, working on my content writing skills and at the same time, enlightening you with some lifestyle changes you need to make to get rid of insomnia. Win-win situation!
Regulate your body clock: Your body clock also known as circadian rhythms are always ticking. It’s the reason why you feel like a hyperactive kid at one point and like a sleep deprived night shift worker at the other and it happens because this cruel world doesn’t allow you to stick to one fixed sleeping schedule. One night it’s 4 hours and on the weekend, it’s 12 hours. This needs to change. Stick to one sleep pattern for all seven days of the week (yes, even the weekend) and work the rest of your day around it. At least 6 hours of sleep is highly recommended.
Eat your meals at least 2 hours before you sleep: A heavy stomach can come in the way of most things and sleep is one of them. It leads to discomfort and sometimes, gastrointestinal diseases. The waiting time allows the food to move into the small intestine resulting in better digestion and uninterrupted sleep. Use this time to wind down and relax your body and mind. Also, avoid consuming beverages like coffee and alcohol because they can majorly alter your night time sleep. Remember the mantra: Eat. Wait for 2 hours. Sleep. Repeat.
Limit your afternoon naps: Okay, both of us can agree that afternoon naps are truly a blessing but I’m pretty sure that we can also agree that anything in excess is harmful. Even though a good sleeping session never really harmed anyone, a long afternoon nap can come in the way of a good night’s sleep. That being said, limiting your naps to 20 minutes in the afternoon is perfectly okay. In fact, it’s all that you need to feel more refreshed, alert and energetic. The cherry on the cake is that a 20-minute nap in the afternoon won’t come in the way of you sleeping like a baby at night.
Read more about the benefits of a 20-minute nap here.
Make your bedroom sleep friendly: Let’s break it down. Bed- room. A room with a bed. A bed to sleep on. It’s very simple. Dinner can be done at the dinner table. Work can be done at the study table and Netflix can be viewed on the couch. Get a comfy mattress, a soft pillow and a fluffy bedsheet, maybe a warm quilt, regulate the temperature, shut the drapes, do whatever you want to ensure that once in your sleep-friendly bedroom, all you do is sleep, sleep and then sleep some more.
Turn the lights off: Lights is to sleep what food is to the body. Basically, it’s very important. Melatonin is a naturally occurring sleep hormone which is controlled by light exposure. Your brain produces more melatonin when it’s dark thus making you feel more sleepy and vice versa. Keeping that in mind, bright work on your laptop, checking Instagram on your phone, watching Netflix or playing Candy Crush is a big no-no before bedtime. If you’re afraid of the dark, you can use a dim red light.
Turn your intense thoughts off: Bedtime thoughts are hard to ignore. But you can control what you think about while you’re lying on your bed in your pajamas and intense, emotional and deep thoughts like thinking about a fight with your lover or an irritating colleague should be the last on your list. Think about positive stuff. Little tricks like counting sheep, saying your numbers backward and thinking about all the good stuff that happened to you throughout the day never fail to induce sleep.
Alright! Time for me to enter my dark bedroom and go off to sleep. Apply these changes in your life and watch insomnia disappear from your life in no time. Goodnight!
Need more tips to get rid of insomnia? Speak with a sleep specialist about ways to help you to sleep better only on DocsApp.