April 7, 2014
Picture this: you come home tired after a long day at work, watch a little TV, eat a big dinner, have a glass of wine, and finally get to plop down on your unbelievably soft foam bed to end your day. You close your eyes, expecting to drift off within seconds, but then… uh-oh.
You find yourself tossing and turning for the next forty-five minutes, completely unable to sleep. You’re tired, sleepy and frustrated. Why is this happening? Why the insomnia? Where exactly did you go wrong?
Well, it could be a couple of things you’ve been doing that’s keeping you awake night after night after night. Just to make sure you’re not robbing yourself from precious sleep, here are seven things that you should NEVER do before going to bed.
This first point doesn’t just talk about alcohol, although drinking alcohol before going to sleep will affect not only your slumber but your skin in the morning as well. And it’s also no secret that drinking caffeinated drinks such as coffee and energy drinks should be avoided. Even the sugar in sodas will keep you up.
Water, hot tea, or warm milk are the best choices of drink to have before going to bed, but drinking too much of anything can cause you to have to make frequent trips to the bathroom in the middle of the night.
Having a healthy late-night snack every once in a while is okay, but sleeping with an uncomfortably full stomach will stimulate your brain waves and cause nightmares. Never eat a big meal at least 1-2 hours before going to bed.
Work until Bedtime
Working, regardless of the nature of your job, will cause you at least a little bit of stress. This is part of life, but it’s best to avoid work stress before bed. Make sure that you have enough time to rest your mind and your body after work.
Make a Mess in your Bedroom
Keep your room as neat and tidy as possible. You may think that it doesn’t bother you much, but hardly anyone finds it easy to sleep in a messy environment, especially if a lot of that mess is on the bed with you.
Watch Television (or use other electronic devices)
Even passively watching television overstimulates the mind and causes sleep deprivation. In addition to this, studies say that exposure to light from the television disrupts sleep. It’s better to turn off the TV at least 30 minutes before bed to give your eyes and mind a break.
Other gadgets such as laptops, tablets, and even phones are of no exception. Can you count how many nights you’ve stayed up late just reading statuses on Facebook or scrolling through the posts on 9gag? Save the web surfing or gaming for when you have free time during the day.
Lock your Pet in the Room with you
Sure they’re cuddly. Sure they’re stress-relievers. But majority of the time, our little buddies have different sleep patterns from us and tend to make a lot of disturbing noise and movement. They also have some strange sleeping habits, such as lying down directly on top of us while we sleep, which can make it hard to breathe.
There are things that are beyond our control, and a lot of the things we worry about are among them. This fact alone should encourage us to put off most concerns that are not immediate for the morning. If you can, resolve conflicts before going to bed. If not, put off doing any brainstorming for the morning, and avoid having serious conversations before hitting the sack. Sometimes writing down feelings can help you set them aside at least for the night.
Sleep loss is no fun. It makes you groggy and sluggish, gives you a migraine, and makes you very unproductive overall. It may be hard to break nightly habits at first, but avoiding these seven things might just be what you need to help you sleep better. Just think, pretty soon you’ll be having uninterrupted sweet dreams!