How to get a better night’s sleep

March 10, 2016

M2M fraser_charcoal(1)The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) have designated this week as Sleep Awareness Week.

You can’t have escaped the awful experience of lying awake in bed, tossing and turning and trying to nod off while a thousand thoughts crowd your mind.

It can be a vicious cycle. The deeper into the night you go, without any sign of dropping off, the more anxious you get, the more aware of the ticking clock you become, and the closer to waking up time you get – without having anything to wake up from.

A little tip we can provide is to install blackout blinds into your bedrooms as they’ll reduce the light coming into a room – street lights are a common problem for people trying to sleep at night.

For a good nights sleep, have a read of the advice of the National Sleep Foundation and reap the benefits.


Make time for sleep

Most adults need seven to nine hours of sleep to function properly, so if you know you need to be up early it’s important to get to bed at a reasonable hour to allow that to happen. Some people famously get by on considerably fewer hours, but they are exceptions.


Mealtimes and late-night snacks

Leave a couple of hours between eating and going to bed. It will help you reap the maximum benefits of a good night’s sleep.


Power down

Switch things off. Blue light from screens can affect your ability to sleep, so turn off your mobile phone and tablet before you go to bed.


Make your bedroom suitable for sleep

The NSF recommend you invest in a comfortable mattress, a good pillow and quality bedding, which will all help you to sleep. They also say you should keep your room dark and use cool, restful colours for the walls. We suggest good blackout blinds will make a huge difference.


Bedtime routine

Create a bedtime ritual so that your body and mind are both prepared for sleep.

Make deep breathing, stretches and other relaxing exercises part of your pre-sleep routine, to wind down and help your mind prepare for sleep.


Cast your troubles aside

Keep a piece of white paper next to your bed and write down any worries of the day before putting your head down on the pillow to sleep. By committing them to paper you remove any anxious thoughts that you may be harbouring and subconsciously you will be reassured that you’re not going to forget anything important when you wake up.


Spring forward

Adapt when the clocks change, which for 2016 is March 27, which this year happens to be Easter Sunday.

In the UK the clocks go forward 1 hour at 1am on the last Sunday in March, and back 1 hour at 2am on the last Sunday in October. The period when the clocks are 1 hour ahead is called British Summer Time (BST). There’s more daylight in the evenings and less in the mornings (sometimes called Daylight Saving Time)

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