Sleep is essential for good health. Lack of good quality sleep affects the mental and physical health.
What Is Normal Ideal Sleep?
Ideal sleep refers to the ability to fall asleep within 10-20 minutes of going to bed and sleeping for 7-8 hrs without awakening in-between.
What Are Sleep Disturbances?
Falling asleep too fast, not able to sleep within 30 minutes of ging to bed or periodic awakening during sleep are all sleep disturbances which can affect the person’s heath.
12 Ways Which Will Help You Fall Asleep Quickly and Naturally
1. Regular Sleep Time
Maintain regular sleep time as it becomes a habit and sets according to the circadian rhythm. You can follow a regular schedule of waking up and sleeping. Plan and train yourself to make it a daily routine.
2. Bedroom Ambience – Cool and Dark
Keeping your bedroom ambience cool and dark gives you the perfect setting and mood to fall sleep. Darkness helps in the production of sleep hormone melatonin which regulates sleep. Use thick curtains to close bright light coming into the room. Usage of proper mattress, bedding and pillow helps you maintain proper position and reduce neck or back pain.
3. Comfortable Clothing
Always wear loose clothes and preferably lighter shades to make you feel comfortable during sleep.
4. Avoid Watching the Clock
This habit adds to stress and causes anxiety and disturbs you periodically.
5. Warm Bath Before Bed
Have warm bath or a hot shower before sleep as it increases the body temperature and relaxes the muscles. When you go to a cool room after a hot bath the temperature falls and sends signals to brain to sleep.
6. Keep Away All Electronic Items One Hour Before Sleep
Electronic items like TV, computers, and mobile phones to be switched off atleast one hour before sleep and mobiles to be kept at a distance. Blue light emitted from these appliances and devices have found to suppress melatonin the sleep hormone leading to sleep disturbances.
7. Eat or Drink Two to Three Hours Before Sleep
Have a balanced diet containing essential nutrients like vitamins and minerals and it is ideal to finish dinner at least 2-3 hours prior to sleeping, to aid proper digestion and make your sleep more comfortable.
8. Avoid Fatty, Sugary and Spicy Foods Before Sleep
Have a beverage like warm milk or green tea if you prefer, they help in relaxing your body.
9. Avoid Caffeine Before Sleep
Caffeine is a stimulator and keeps you awake.
10. Avoid Smoking and Alcohol Before Sleep
As they are stimulators and can disturb sleep. Of course, we are not referring to you are getting drunk and passing out!
11. Stress Relievers
If you have had a very stressful day and your mind is full of thoughts about problems, try listening to music, reading a good book or writing down of some good things, all of which will relax you before you sleep and help you to control the stress. Certain sleep-inducing music (available on you tube and internet) may also help lull you into sleep.
12. Regular Exercise
Regular physical activity can increase the hormonal levels of Serotonin and decrease the hormonal levels of Cortisol (Stress Hormone). It is ideal to exercise in the morning or during daytime and not just before sleeping as it may make you alert and prevent you from falling asleep. Yoga and meditation will help to relax the body and mind and bring down the stress.
Just remember that sleep is vital for proper body and brain functioning. Lots of vital and reparative processes occur during sleep. So, try not to burn the midnight oil too frequently. Remember the wise saying ‘Early to bed and early to rise makes us Happy, Healthy & Wise’.