What Is Sleep Hygiene and How Can It Help You at Night?
What is sleep hygiene exactly? It's a series of habits that can help you get a better night's sleep. This is what you need to know.
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Are you always having a hard time falling asleep at night, and you can't find a solution to this problem? It's time you observe healthy sleep hygiene to improve the quality of sleep you get every day.
So what is sleep hygiene, and how can it improve your night's sleep? The practice involves adopting certain habits that will set you up for better sleep. Healthy sleep hygiene equates to having a bedroom environment free of destruction during bedtime.
In this blog, we'll share everything you need to know about sleep hygiene. Read on to get enlightened on this underlooked topic.
What Is Sleep Hygiene?
Sleep hygiene relates to observing healthy sleep habits during bedtime to promote wellbeing. Sticking to these habits will benefit your physical and mental health and improve your quality of life.
Your routines before going to bed can affect the quality of sleep you get at night. These routines include drink/food choices, physical activity, and evening routines. For instance, if your evening routine involves staying up late at night watching or using your phone, you're likely to get low-quality sleep.
How Sleep Hygiene Can Help You at Night
Good sleep hygiene goes beyond improving your physical and mental health. It can help you stay productive during the day and fight mental disorders like depression and anxiety. You can also count on the practice to improve your mood and concentration levels during the daytime.
Your brain adjusts to the kind of habits you like observing every evening before going to bed. It may take time for you to reverse the damage brought by unhealthy bedtime habits or sleep depreciation. You are also at risk of developing chronic insomnia if you fail to adjust your sleeping routine.
It doesn't cost much and takes little effort to improve your sleep hygiene, given that you spend about a third of your life in bed. You will also improve your immunity and cut on sleep-related medical expenses when you stick to healthy bedtime habits.
Signs and Effects of Poor Sleep Hygiene
It's easier to spot signs of poor sleep hygiene than to treat its adverse effects. If you experience sleep disturbances frequently or have difficulty falling asleep, consider improving your bedtime habits. You should also consider the same if you feel sleepy all the time during the day.
Lack of consistency in sleep quality and quantity may suggest poor sleep hygiene. You wouldn't experience this inconsistency if you slept six to eight hours a day.
The effects of poor sleeping hygiene can manifest in different ways in your daily life and are potent, just like sleep disorders. They include lack of drive and motivation, tiredness and low energy, and mood changes. You may also experience headaches and memory problems and find it hard to make sound decisions or concentrate.
Ways To Practice Good Sleep Hygiene
Good sleep hygiene practices involve activities that will help you sleep better at night. Consider observing daily healthy habits, setting a sleep schedule, and optimizing your bedroom as part of these practices:
Observe Healthy Daily Habits
Your daily daytime routines affect the quality and quantity of sleep you get every night. Sticking to healthy daily habits can boost blood circulation and prevent sleep disruptions.
Consider getting up to 30 minutes of sunlight every day to support your circadian system for a better night's sleep. Regular activities like yoga and cardio help your body to release endorphins, which promote healing when you're asleep. Stop smoking and limit your alcohol consumption as part of healthy sleeping hygiene.
If you like taking caffeinated drinks to improve concentration, avoid them during your bedtime hours to fall asleep quickly. You also avoid eating heavy meals for dinner since they take time to digest. Restrict activities like reading or watching in bed to train your mind that the bed is only meant for sleeping.
Maintain a Consistent Sleep Schedule
A sleep schedule will get your mind and body accustomed to sleeping at a particular time to maximize the bedtime hours. The schedule should allow for a fixed wake-up time, whether it's a weekend or weekday. Any disruptions in this routine will interfere with your quality and quantity of sleep.
Stick to a schedule that prioritizes sleep rather than activities like socializing, studying, and working. You should have some spare time during the day to accomplish these activities instead of prioritizing them over sleep. Do your best to finish any pending tasks you have before bedtime every night to fall asleep comfortably.
Since sleep schedules take time to go into effect, you should make gradual adjustments. Give your mind and body a week or two to adjust to the new schedule for it to be fruitful. You should also track any progress made in your sleep schedule. It will help you determine whether your sleep quality improved in a certain time frame.
Spice Up Your Bedroom
Your bedroom should be the focal point of sleep hygiene when paired with your daily habits. It should give off tranquility and be inviting enough to help you fall asleep without disruptions.
Invest in a high-quality mattress and luxury pillows for pain-free and comfortable sleep. Get comfortable bedding (sheets and blankets) that matches your sleeping preferences to improve your bedtime experiences. Your bedroom should also have cool yet comfortable temperature levels for comfort.
Use an eye mask or heavy curtains to block out light and earplugs to drown out noise. Calming scents like lavender make your bedroom a positive sleeping space since they induce a calm state of mind.
Rejuvenate Your Sleep Today
Sleep hygiene involves sticking to healthy sleep habits during the day as well as bedtime. These practices can boost your sleep quality if you are having a difficult time falling and staying asleep. We hope that this guide answers your question on "what is sleep hygiene?"
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