Tips To Improve Sleep Quality & Quantity

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IN THE MORNING

WAKE UP AT THE SAME TIME EVERYDAY.

Getting up at the same time every day encourages the body to get into a regular routine & can help you to feel tired earlier at night.


GET OUTSIDE EARLY.

As soon as possible after waking, get outside into natural lighting so the body recognises the morning as 'wake time'.


EXERCISE.

Do some aerobic exercise to increase energy & circulation. You could do this outdoors for further benefits.

DURING THE DAY

AVOID CAFFEINE.

Caffeine increases cortisol levels, which opposes melatonin (the sleep hormone). This leads to disruption of the sleep-wake cycle.  If you find it hard to avoid it completely, reduce consumption to one caffeinated drink before 12pm.


AVOID NAPPING DURING THE DAY.

Even if you feel tired, napping can interfere with going to sleep at night.  If you feel you must, keep it to a 20 minute 'power nap' for best results & without interfering with your night time routine.


DIET 

Ensure you have protein 4-5 times a day to supply adequate amino acids 

Include foods high in tryptophan, such as turkey, cheese, nuts, seeds, rice, eggs, dark chocolate. 


AVOID ALCOHOL

Avoid alcohol as this WILL disrupt your circadian rhythm.


SAMPLE DIET

Try this for a day of happiness & restful sleep-
*Porridge with nuts & banana at breakfast
*Turkey with brown rice & vegetables
*Cheese omelette with spinach, mushrooms, capsicum
*Pistachios & seeds for snacks

AT NIGHT

ADJUST YOUR BEDTIME.

Try slowly scaling back your bedtime until you are at the desired hour.  Going to bed 15 minutes earlier every few days can help reset your bedtime.


BLOCK BLUE LIGHT.

The blue light emitted from computers, phones & television screens suppresses melatonin (sleep hormone) production.  Therefore, it is important that in the hours leading up to bed, we eliminate these sources of light to have a restful sleep.  You can purchase a screen cover or glasses that block blue light if you absolutely have to use technology in the evening.


AVOID EXERCISING IN THE EVENING.

Exercise is stimulating & energising, which can cause us to not feel tired at bedtime particularly if we exercise too late in the day.  If the evening is usually the time you exercise, then consider switching it to the morning.  If this cannot be done, then try doing tai chi or yoga to encourage relaxation.


SET THE MOOD.

Create a relaxing bedtime routine with a warm bath & relaxing music, for instance.  Make sure your bed is comfortable, the room is dark, and the temperature is not too warm.

Sleep in a cool room. Overheating can disrupt sleep.  Cold? snuggle under the covers - these can easily be removed if you heat up.


Other tips can be found at The Sleep Foundation

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/sleep-tools-tips/healthy-sleep-tips

SWEET DREAMS...........