Are you one of those who count sheep every night? Maybe you scroll your social media in an attempt to feel tired and finally fall asleep? Or maybe racing thoughts are too high and stressful, so you can’t psychically relax? You are not alone. According to a Consumer Reports survey of 4023 U.S. adults, 68% of Americans struggle to fall asleep at least once a week, experiencing the frustrations of tossing and turning at night to no avail.
Whether you need a super soft pillow, reduce stress, or find a comfortable position, lack of sleep is not only an unpleasant situation, it may affect your mental and psychical health. Chronic lack of sleep is linked with increased appetite, anxiety, bad mood, obesity, and heart problems. So what can affect our sleep, and how to cope with sleep issues? Let’s explore below.
Reasons Why You Can’t Sleep
It’s Too Hot
While some prefer such temperatures, for most people, a hot room won’t work for healthy sleep. Scientists found out that a cool room around 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit is best for a quality night’s rest. When the temperature in your room is too hot, you may experience things like night sweats that greatly disrupt the quality of sleep.
Blue Light Is Waking You Up
Blue light is the light provided by LED devices. However, we tend to use our phones and laptops for watching movies or scrolling social media before sleep. This light has a negative effect on melatonin production, making it hard to fall asleep. So you can either download an app that blocks this light or avoid using your phone for at least 2 hours before bed.
You Can’t Get Comfortable
We all have nights when we don’t feel comfortable. However, when it usually happens and makes it hard to fall asleep, it is best to check your pillow and mattress. Making your sleeping room comfortable also involves things like reducing light from the window, organizing a peaceful atmosphere, and maybe diffusing essential oils. Your sleeping room should be soothing.
Stress or Anxiety
Stress and anxiety are one of the most common reasons for bad sleep. Racing thoughts and an increased heartbeat disturb us and don’t allow us to calm down and relax. Relaxation is the key factor for healthy sleep. Stress and anxiety before sleep can be caused by too many working hours, stressful situations, arguments and unresolved problems.
Simple Pre-Bedtime Tips To Fall Asleep Faster
Since you now know the main reasons for poor sleep quality, let’s explore tips that may help you fall asleep faster.
Wait 30 Minutes
If you are trying to fall asleep for a while without any success, try to give yourself at least 30 minutes to regroup before trying again. However, you don’t need to lay in bed and just wait since it will only cause racing thoughts and make it difficult to fall asleep later. That is why we recommend getting out of bed and moving to another area of your apartment. Try some soothing activities, like yoga, stretching and reading. Once you get back to bed, you will like the cold side of your pillow to look forward to.
Keep the Room Cool, Peaceful, and Dark
As we mentioned, the atmosphere in your room plays a key role in how you sleep. Making your room cozy is essential since sleep requires darkness and peace. You first need to consider buying dark curtains to block all the light. In addition, you need to make your sleeping room cold and peaceful.
In addition, you can also add a diffuser into your room filled with calming essential oils, like lavender, that will reduce stress and promote relaxation. If you want to optimize your bedroom, consider buying a glowing light that will lull you into a calm, deep sleep.
Using a sleep app is an easy and convenient way to improve sleep. They work like your personal sleep assistant, providing calming sounds that have been scientifically proven to reduce stress and promote sleep. Some apps also offer practices and techniques that can help you fall asleep faster. A mesmerize app also combines hypnotic visuals, psycho-acoustic music, and guided meditations to help you clear your mind and unwind before bed.
Switch Up Your Sleeping Position
No matter if you prefer sleeping on your back, side or stomach, you should try changing the position to find what suits you best at the moment. So when you struggle with falling asleep next time, change the position and check how you feel. Even though over 55% of people sleep on their sides and 38% are back sleepers, you may be one out of 7% of the population who prefer sleeping on a stomach. Since there is no one-size-fits-all sleeping position, you can teach your body to sleep in a position that makes you feel comfortable and that suits your type of pillow.
Practice Calming Yoga
If you’re tossing and turning, it may only worsen the situation, leading to feelings of restlessness. An excellent way to reduce tension in your body is by doing some calming yoga for sleep. It not only helps with body tension but also helps reset your mind.
Studies found that both resistance exercise and stretching before going to sleep led to significant improvements in patients struggling with insomnia. Doing yoga before sleep helps to reduce racing thoughts and anxiety while also letting you enjoy a calm state in the body which helps to enjoy quality rest.
Mindfulness exercises are also great for better sleep. They help you focus on a calming state inside your body, eliminating stress and racing thoughts that may disturb you from relaxation. Practicing meditation for sleep has been found to have health benefits such as reducing anxiety, better stress management, and increasing the ability to relax.