Are you someone who finds it hard to get a good night's rest? Dr. Danielle Martin set up an ideal bedroom and some rules you could follow to get a good night's sleep.
1. Create a Bedtime Ritual
Do the same things each night to tell your body it's time to wind down. This might include taking a warm bath or shower, reading a book or listening to soothing music — all preferably with the lights dimmed. Relaxing activities can promote better sleep by easing the transition between wakefulness and drowsiness. When you have too much to do and think about your sleep is likely to suffer.
Start with the basics, such as getting organized, setting priorities and delegating tasks for the next day. Before bed, jot down what's on your mind and then set it aside for tomorrow. Also, try not reading in bed. Your bed should only be used for two activities — and one of them is sleep!
Must read: 5 Ways to Sleep Better Now »
2. Use Blackout Blinds
Bright morning light can deprive you of crucial rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. Create a room that's ideal for sleeping. Often, this means cool, dark and quiet. Consider using room-darkening shades to create an environment that suits your needs. You could also paint the room a soothing colour.
Must read: Sleep Cycle 101 »
3. Set the Right Temperature
Set your room to the right temperature — that being not too hot and not too cold. If you're too warm or too cool, you may shift in bed waking yourself up.
Must read: Secrets for a Good Night’s Sleep »
4. Stick to a Sleep Schedule
Go to bed and get up at the same time every day, even on weekends, holidays and days off! Being consistent reinforces your body's sleep-wake cycle and helps promote better sleep at night. There's a caveat though, if you don't fall asleep within 15 minutes, get up and do something relaxing. Go back to bed when you're tired. If you agonize over falling asleep, you might find it even tougher to nod off.
Tip: Use nicotine, caffeine and alcohol with caution. The stimulating effects of nicotine and caffeine take hours to wear off and can wreak havoc on quality sleep. And even though alcohol might make you feel sleepy at first, it can disrupt sleep later in the night.
5. Limit Sharing your Room with Pets
Sorry Fido. If you share your bed, make sure there's enough room for two. If you have children or pets, try to set limits on how often they sleep with you or insist on separate sleeping quarters.
Must read: Chris’ Angels: Sleep Aids »
6. No TV in the Room
Yes, it is important to not have tablets, phones or a television in your room. Be wary of using your TV or other electronic devices as part of your bedtime ritual. Some research suggests that screen time or other media use before bedtime interferes with sleep. The bright light from the screen stimulates the brain to be more awake, making it harder to sleep. Sometimes the content you watch can keep you awake too.
And, if you don't manage to get a good night's rest, a final must read: Fake A Good Night's Sleep »