If you’re finding it hard to get enough quality zzz's, here are five researched-based, natural methods that might help.
Research shows that a good night’s sleep is just as important, if not more, than regular exercise and a healthy diet. If you’re not getting a quality 7-9 hours per night, your hormones, exercise performance, mood and brain function are likely to be negatively affected.
If you’re struggling to get quality sleep, it might be tempting to reach for over-the-counter medication for a quick fix – but these sleep aids can cause unwanted side effects and are not recommended for long-term treatment.
Luckily, there are many simple, proven practices and home remedies that can help you sleep better, naturally. Read on for five of our favourites:
1. Stick to a schedule
It’s been proven time and time again that going to bed and waking up at the same time every day helps improve sleep.
Studies have highlighted that irregular sleep patterns can alter your circadian rhythm and levels of melatonin which signal your brain to sleep.
Sticking to a set routine, even on weekends, helps align your body’s natural sleep-wake rhythm making it easier to fall asleep quickly and wake feeling refreshed.
Try limiting the difference between your daily sleep/wake times to no more than an hour to reap the benefits of a consistent sleep schedule.
2. Stay away from stimulants
No surprises here, staying away from stimulants like nicotine and caffeine will help improve your sleep quality.
Did you know that the effects of caffeine can last up to 8 hours?
If you must, aim to get your coffee fix early in the morning, leaving plenty of time for its stimulating effects to wear off before bed.
3. Take time to wind down
Taking time to unwind before going to bed can help you get a better night’s sleep. Consider building a consistent pre-sleep nighttime routine to help you relax in the evening. Aim to avoid the use of stimulating screens like televisions, phones, and tablets before bed.
Additions to your evening routine could include:
Practising gentle yoga
Reading a book
Listening to a guided meditation or relaxing music
Did you know? Just 30mins in an infrared sauna can activate your parasympathetic nervous system which takes you out of a stressful state, encourages relaxation and sets you up for a better night’s sleep – learn more.
Try out different methods and find what routine works best for you!
4. Keep active
Research has shown that exercising for 20 to 30 minutes per day can help improve sleep quality. Being active can help you fall asleep faster and sleep more soundly – as long as it's done at the right time.
You should aim to avoid strenuous physical activity 2-3 hours before bed as exercise stimulates the body to secrete the stress hormone cortisol, keeping you awake and alert.
For an extra benefit, try exercising outside – natural sunlight during the day helps keep your circadian rhythm healthy.
5. Float your way to a better sleep
Flotation therapy has been around since the 1950s, when scientists developed early flotation tanks, but has gained popularity in recent years for its potential to help with a range of ailments, including poor sleep.
Filled with up to 200kg of magnesium, lying in a float tank creates a sense of weightlessness. The body’s suspended state allows the spine to decompress, alleviating joint pain and inflammation, and muscles to relax far beyond their normal levels.
Float therapy quiets activity in the central nervous system, deeply relaxing the body and mind. After a one-hour float session, you’ll emerge far more rested and relaxed than before and prepared for a fantastic night’s sleep.
Keen to experience the restful benefits of Float Therapy for yourself? Book a 60min float session online now.