Here are five sleep routines that can help you sleep much faster and longer.

Sleep is the balm that calms and refurbishes the body after a long day. Sleep is largely driven by the body’s internal clock, which takes cues from external elements such as sunlight and temperature. Just as many young people have a routine to keep their skin and hair looking young and fresh, a sleep routine or sleep hygiene is extremely necessary for an individual to glean all the benefits derived from sleeping good.

It is a well-known fact that sleeping aides the body and brain to replenish lost energy. Memory consolidation, information processing, physical growth, muscle repair, and strengthening of the immune system occur during sleep.

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Inadequate sleep has been said to be linked to poor work performance, mood swings, motor accidents, and relationship problems (interesting, right?). It also increases the risk of heart related diseases, stroke, diabetes, obesity, depression and high blood pressure.

A sleep hygiene or routine refers to healthy habits that when practiced continuously may help an individual to sleep faster and longer.

Related media: 6 Tips For Better Sleep | Sleeping With Science, A TED Series

#1. Create A Nightly Routine And Keep A Sleep Roster

Establish and follow a night time routine inculcating a relaxing activity or activities you enjoy. This can be any activity that help calms your body and mind leaving you in a languid state. You can choose to read a book, take a long relaxing bath or listen to soothing music. Also stick and consistently follow a sleep roster which should include times allocated for sleep and waking up. This will lead to having better and longer sleep.

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#2. Create A Good Sleep Environment

An ideal sleep environment can help you sleep faster and longer. It should be electronic free and at a comfortable temperature. Looking at our current attachment to all things electronic, it is advisable to turn off or put aside mobile phones, tablets, and laptops. Also you can turn off your TV or lower the volume and turn off or dim all lights in your room thereby creating a warm cozy space to aid you fall asleep faster and sleep longer.

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#3. Engage In Regular Physical Activity

Incorporating regular physical activity into your day plan can improve sleep. You can schedule daily exercise time, use the stairs in lieu of the elevator sometimes. In the evening engage in moderate intensity exercises like walking, yoga, slow dancing, and leisure swimming. Engaging in regular physical activity will help improve sleep quality.

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#4. Check Food And Drink Intake Before Bed

The kind of food and drinks taken before bedtime impacts the quality of sleep. For an ideal and quality sleep experience, the stomach should not be too full or too empty. Take small to medium sized meals before bed, large meals especially if high in fat can contribute to sleep disorders like insomnia.

Also limit caffeine intake especially close to the night. Caffeinated beverages like coffee, tea and a lot of dinks including energy drinks stimulate the brain and body to be active if not more active, making it very difficult for one to fall asleep easier and faster.

#5. Seek Professional Help

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Many people do not acknowledge sleep disorders as disorders. They blame other things for their inability to sleep easier and longer. Mental health issues can impact your sleep, its best to seek professional help from a qualified therapist or psychologist. Sleep related disorders include insomnia, hypersomnia, central sleep apnea, among others. Grief, depression and anxiety can also affect your sleep. Proper diagnosis and professional advice can then be given to help you sleep better.

Adults need at least seven hours of sleep each night. Sleep occurs naturally to prevent exhaustion therefore if you feel sleepy, it’s a sign your body is nearing its limit and also occurs to help the body replenish itself after exhaustion. If possible, limit daytime naps to aid easier sleep at night.

Good night!

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Written by: Phoebe Addo, Sat, Mar 12, 2022.


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