There are times you feel so tired you are positive that nothing will keep you awake. Then it happens again. You lie awake for far too long, unable to drift off to sleep. Whether this is an occasional problem or an ongoing concern, there are seven remedies you should consider trying.
#1 White Noise
If noises are keeping you awake, white noise could help you drift off and improve your sleep quality. White noise is a sound you choose that will smooth out the background sounds that are keeping you awake. It works by keeping the noise level in your bedroom even. You could invest in one of the many white noise machines that are available on the market, or you could simply run a fan or humidifier. White noise will improve your sleep quality by keeping sounds from disturbing your sleep cycles.
#2 Reduce Your Blue Light Exposure
Your electronic devices, cell phones, computers, tablets and indoor lighting and televisions emit blue light. This is the same as the light emitted from the sun. Blue light signals your brain that it is time to be awake. Blue light disrupts your natural sleep rhythms and disrupts your body’s production of melatonin, the chemical that regulates your sleep cycle. By turning off your devices at least an hour before turning in for the night, your body will start producing melatonin, and you will fall asleep much easier.
#3 Melatonin Supplements
Melatonin is produced in our bodies naturally to regulate our sleep/wake cycles. A melatonin supplement will help you fall asleep faster. A dose between 0.10 and 5 mg is recommended for most adults. Start with a low dose if you have not taken melatonin before. Melatonin will not knock you out; it will just let your body know it is time to sleep.
#4 Eat Foods High in L- Tryptophan
L-tryptophan is an essential fatty acid that helps balance hormones, fight anxiety and make you feel sleepy. There are other foods high in L-tryptophan besides your Thanksgiving turkey. Try snacking on sesame seeds, dairy products, potatoes or bananas to encourage sleep.
#5 Replace Your Mattress
If you find it difficult to fall asleep, or you wake up with aches and pains, your problem might be your mattress. Check your mattress for signs of wear. If you find that it sags in the center or slopes on the sides, it may be time for a replacement. It is suggested that you replace your mattress every 7-10 years, but you may need to replace yours sooner if it is not supporting your body correctly.
#6 Change Your Position
With multiple sleeping positions, some positions are healthier for you to sleep in than others. If you are a back sleeper, you are already sleeping in the most recommended sleep position. Sleeping on your back will prevent a lot of joint pain and muscle stiffness. Sleeping on your back lets your spine rest in its most natural position and will not place pressure on your shoulders and hips.
#7 Set a Sleep Schedule
Waking up and going to bed at the same time every day can help you fall asleep easier. A sleep schedule will allow your circadian rhythms, your internal body clock, to reset. This will allow you to fall asleep and wake up much easier. You may want to stick to this sleep schedule even on days that you do not need to get up for work, so your body stays accustomed to your routine.
Getting enough rest is essential to your health and well-being. If you are getting enough sleep, you should wake before your alarm sounds in the morning. If you have difficulty getting to sleep, one or more of these seven remedies could help.