Some of us like to joke about: I’ll sleep when I get old” I remember saying that when I was younger. Little did I know how important a good night sleep is every single night and how many things can be messed up if we don’t get our 7-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep. When we are a sleep the body is busy to process our thoughts, process our toxins, repair damaged tissue, and refill our hormones. The body is busy healing us at night. Unfortunately many people simply can’t get a good long nigh sleep and wrestle with insomnia or waking up at night and have trouble falling back to sleep again.
We fall asleep because the hormone and neurotransmitter melatonin get secreted by a little gland called, the pineal gland located in our brain. Melatonin rises steadily throughout the evening and hit a plateau around 2 a.m. and starts to slowly fall off and hit the lowest point when cortisol starts to rise so we are ready for the day at early rise. But with our addiction to TV shows, working late at night replying to emails or doing chores around the house it is no wonder the body is confused and is interfering with our natural sleep chemical shifts. When we expose our body to all sorts of screens we confuse the brain to think it is day time. Working on a presentation for the next day while noise from the Tv is constantly in the background can be a stressful factor and the body’s cortisol level is not going down as it should and is interfering with melatonin and therefore suppress melatonin synthesis.
5 proper sleep hygiene practices
It can be difficult to change ones evening habits but new routines can seem challenging at first but once new habit are formed they can really make a difference in getting the sleep you need.
Instead of being busy at night with chores try instead quieter activities e.g playing with pet, reading a book, going for a walk.
Turn off blue light-emitting device e.g. phones, TVs, computers one to two hours before bed.
Your bedroom should have the right temperature. Rooms which are too hot or too cold tend to wake us up. In addition to waking us up to mess with the bedding, temperature extremes naturally increase our stress hormones which promotes wakefulness.
Have a relaxing ritual at night can help you to relax and set the tone for sleep. Brew a nice cup of herbal tea, take a hot bath.
Don’t drink any caffeinated beverages or eat any refined sugar product. Some people are slow metaboliser off these stimulant and some people are not. If you have trouble falling asleep don’t eat chocolate or drink caffeinated beverages after noon. It can “effect” you that many hours later.
Without restful sleep, it can be challenging for any of us to be at our best. . You’ll be amazed at how much more positive and energizing your days can become with a full night sleep.