Dr Ned's 13 Rules To Better Sleep
Most of these I consider to be common sense, but actually doing them consistently will help many people with sleep problems. So, here, in no particular order, are Dr Ned's 13 rules to better sleep. 1. Exercise in the morning or early afternoon. You’ll feel better the rest of the day and you’ll sleep better.
2. Stop eating before bed. Eating heavy foods may cause you fall asleep, but when your blood sugar drops you're likely to wake up. Improve your health and your sleep by learning to not eat at all at least two hours before bed.
3. Eat at regular intervals during the day. This will keep more alert all day and ready to sleep at night. This will also help you avoid over indulgence at night.
4. Write it out. Before bed write down all your thoughts in a journal without judgment. This helps clear your mind of all the things you have attention (conscious or unconscious) on.
5. Go to the dark side. Our brains need the time in the dark. Wear a sleep mask if necessary.
6. Sleep schedule. Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, including weekends. This will help your body get into a rhythm.
7. Don't oversleep. Too much of a good thing can actually make you feel more tired. Also, don’t go back to sleep. If you’re awake – GET UP! Oversleeping and go back to sleep in the morning can foul up your sleep cycles so you end up feeling less rested.
8. Get comfortable. Temperature, sheets, mattress, pillow, clothing, etc. What’s comfortable for you?
9. Plan to sleep 7.5 hours every night. Some research suggest that during sleep we go through a 1.5 hr cycle and waking up at the top of that cycle helps us feel more rested
10. Nap wisely. Not so much that it keeps you up at night, but if you’re able to a nap is great.
11. Avoid stimulants. This includes caffeine, tobacco and alcohol. Alcohol may help you fall asleep but it is likely to cause to wake up in the middle of the night.
12. Have mom read you a bed time story. Add white noise to your sleeping environment. Ive developed the habit of listening to an easy listening audio book to fall asleep to. Some people use a fan.
13. Rule out medications. If you are taking medication, ask your doctor if it could be affecting your sleep.
If you've been struggling with sleep problems for several weeks or more than your whole sleep system may be malfunctioning. If so, consider a complementary consultation with me, Dr Ned McArthur.
Sleep deprivation interferes with your body's ability to heal, it fouls up your ability to think, it messes up your emotions and can lead to other chronic health problems.