Approximately 40% of Americans complain of insomnia. If you are one of them, taking sleeping pills may seem tempting. Before you do, understand that they can cause breathing problems in people with respiratory issues, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Others find that they experience numbness and tingling in their limbs, changes in appetite, or other problems. Of course, you should consult with your primary care physician about any sleep or other health-related concerns. But if you have sleep issues, try to make sure you have a healthy sleeping environment and practice good sleep habits.
How to Create a Healthy Sleeping Environment
The first step in creating a healthy sleeping environment is to remove all electronics from your bedroom. Blue light from electronic devices fools the brain into thinking it is daylight so that you will wake up repeatedly throughout the night. It also interferes with producing the hormones that you need to sleep and wake up feeling rested.
Make your sleeping environment as dark as possible. Use heavy drapes or room-blackening shades to block light from coming in the windows. Additionally, you should sleep with your bedroom door closed as it will help stop light from entering your bedroom from other parts of your home.
You should also block out as much noise as possible. If you have a hollow-core bedroom door, upgrade it to a solid-core door. Then, add rubberized weatherstripping under the door to further block out sound. Often, moving a heavy piece of furniture so that it sits along the wall where the noise is coming from can be effective. Noise-deadening curtains can be an excellent solution for outside noises entering your home. There are also sound masking systems and ambient background music that can help with noise reduction.
Keeping temperatures cool can help you get a great night’s rest. While babies need a room between 65 and 70 degrees to sleep comfortably, everyone else will get a better night’s sleep when temperatures are between 60 and 65 degrees.
If you are a tall person and have trouble fitting comfortably or properly on an ordinary-sized bed, look into buying and using a mattress extender or getting an extra long bed to help you get better sleep.
Create a Bedtime Routine
Creating a bedtime routine signals to your body that it is time to wind down for the night. Usually, you need to start about 45 minutes before you lay down.
Journaling right before bed is a great way to help put your mind at ease. Write about the things troubling you and keep writing until you have arrived at a workable solution.
Then, take a hot bath. Put a few drops of lavender essential oil in your bath to help your body relax. Taking your bath at night helps ensure that you get a good night’s sleep because as your body starts to cool off, you will naturally get sleepy.
Make sure that your curtains are closed tightly and shut the door to your bedroom. Following these steps can put you in a place to enjoy a great night’s sleep.
If you still find it challenging to get a good night’s sleep, contact your primary care physician or American Behavioral Clinics. We can help and would love to discuss any issues with you that may be preventing you from getting the rest your body needs.