Want to Sleep Better? Establish a Sleep Routine.
Did you get a good night of sleep last night? Were both the quantity (amount of sleep) and quality (falling asleep easily and staying asleep) to your liking?
If yes, good for you - hopefully this blog can help you enhance your sleep experience even further! If no, what factors played into your disturbed slumber? I hope this blog can help you with some effective strategies.
I would like to propose we focus on your sleep routine to help improve both the quantity and quality of your sleep each night.
Our sleep routine is the intentional and habitual pattern of behaviors we perform to signal to our body and mind that it is time to wind down and get ready for bed. A sleep routine will look different for each individual, but here are a few “best practices” that you can choose from to establish yours.
-Establishing a consistent bedtime and wake time each day.
-Starting your bedtime routine at the same time each night, and follow a consistent pattern of behaviors.
-Dimming the lights about 60-minutes prior to your bedtime.
-Reading a book you enjoy to start drifting off with.
-Screen time (phone, tablet, TV) 60 to 90-minutes before your bedtime, or make sure that you are wearing your blue light glasses to avoid blue light exposure. Blue light affects the release of a sleep inducing hormone, melatonin, that helps us drift off to sleep. Some devices now have night time settings that reduce or eliminate blue light exposure - check your devices for such settings.
-Work-related tasks or tasks that get your mind running at least 30 to 60-minutes before bed. Tempted to check e-mail one more time before hitting the hay? Stimulating our problem-solving brain before bedtime can affect our ability to fall asleep and stay asleep.
-Eating a large meal 30 to 60-minutes before bed. Digestion can disturb your sleep.
-Alcohol consumption in excess (i.e. more than one serving of an alcoholic beverage). Whereas alcohol may make you sleepy, it does not allow you to get into deep sleep and causes night waking, thus affecting your sleep quality.
Need help establishing a sleep routine? That’s something I can help you with.