Basic sleep hygiene

Basic sleep hygiene
  • not drinking caffeine after midday;
  • not exercising too late;
  • not drinking alcohol before bed;
  • eating sensibly;
  • leaving mobile devices outside the bedroom (artificial light disrupts the brain).

If doing natural things like this doesn’t work, then it might be wise to consult with a specialist or a doctor.

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Health

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It's the key to a good night’s sleep. It means pinning your bedtime to the same time every night, even on weekends, and waking up at the same time every morning, even on weekends. 

It's important to settle into a groove or a cycle that your body understands and responds to. Once you do this, you’ll sleep better, feel better, have more energy, and worry less.

The "8-hour sleep" myth

8 hours of sleep/night is a useful goal, but it’s not true that everyone needs that. 

A lot of people get obsessed with this goal of getting 8 hours of sleep every single night, and because they’re someone who just doesn’t need that much sleep, or they can’t reliably sleep that long, they get anxious about it and that actually creates issues with insomnia.

Get out of bed

The bedroom should be for sleeping. If you’re lying in bed for more than 15 minutes and not sleeping, just get out and leave the room.

Staying in bed while you’re anxious or not sleeping is one of the most common contributors to chronic insomnia because it trains the brain to create bad associations. So you have to break that.

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Creating a sleep-inducing environment
  • Turn the temperature between 60 and 72 degrees.
  • Turn off the lights. Artificial light suppresses your body’s production of the sleep hormone melatonin.
  • Turn down the noise. Wear earplugs if you have to, or consider investing in a white noise machine.
  • Pick comfortable bedding. Avoid synthetic fabrics like polyester that trap heat and moisture.
  • Invest in a comfortable mattress.

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Ways to get back to sleep
  • Try not to stress over your inability to fall asleep again.
  • Make relaxation your goal, not sleep.
  • If you’ve been awake for more than 15 minutes, get out of bed and do a quiet, non-stimulating activity.
  • Postpone worrying and brainstorming.
  • Push your sleep reset button and look at this activity from a new light, as if you are now trying this for the first time in your life.
  • Keep a time window of 30 minutes in your bedtime and wake up time.
  • Engage in relaxing activities like meditating, reading or cloth folding.
  • Catch your sleep cycle and if you miss it, be attentive for the next one.
  • Perform a moderate activity one hour before bedtime, to avoid jamming your body.

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