A good nights sleep is something I personally look forward to at the end of the day. It is the best way to repair and rejuvenate the body and the mind. Our busy lifestyles are making sleep less of a priority and harder to do. Do you often find yourself staying up late, feeling wired and tired, and finding it almost impossible to fall asleep? Or, do you find it difficult staying asleep through the night, and wake up feeling exhausted? Read on to discover my simply solutions to this problem.
HONOR A BEDTIME WIND DOWN RITUAL:
- Avoiding the use of technology at night (yep, all of it: computers, phones and TVs etc.). Instead, embrace the art of "switching off" and do something relaxing with your time, such as reading a book, taking a bath, listening to some relaxing music, meditating, doing some gentle stretching or writing in a journal to get thoughts / stress off your mind.
- If you live in the city, use ear plugs and an eye mask to block out excess noise and light.
- Don't consume caffeine or other stimulants after 12 noon. Enjoy them during the morning instead, and if you are a coffee drinker, try to savor one cup only.
- Make sure your bedroom, bedding and pjs (if you wear them haha) aren't too hot. If they are, it can disrupt sound sleep.
- Dim the lights and sip on a calming cup of herbal tea: lavender, chamomile, valerian, and passionflower are very relaxing varieties (a good wine substitute I think).
- Try not to eat dinner too late, ideally we would all eat a light dinner (salad, soup, stir fry etc.) approx. 3 hours before bedtime to ensure sound sleep. (Also try to get out of the habit of having alcohol on a nightly basis, save it for special occasions or as an end of week "treat").
Please note: I am not a doctor, this is not diagnosing, curing or intended as a treatment plan in any way!
Natural and safe sleep assistance to try could include...
- FOR TROUBLE FALLING ASLEEP:
0.5-3mg of melatonin taken 30 minutes prior to bedtime (start with 0.5; it is sufficient for most people). This is generally safe and effective for short-term use.
- FOR TROUBLE STAYING ASLEEP:
50-200mg of 5-HTP (5-hydroxytryptophan) before bed (start with the lower dose).
*Note: do not take 5-HTP if you are also currently taking a SSRI or SNRI (or other serotonin-enhancing) antidepressant drug (e.g. Zoloft, Trazadone) without additional guidance.