Having a long and healthy sleep each night can massively impact the way you feel the following day.
Unfortunately, there are many factors that can affect sleep quality and cause you to be restless, from aches and pains, to eating before bed, to not being in a relaxing environment.
We want to share just a handful of our simple tips to promote a better sleep for you. So if you or a loved one are frequently having trouble falling asleep, this quick read may be of benefit you.
How much sleep should I be getting?
The amount of sleep someone needs does vary from person to person and will also depend a lot on age.
It is important to make sure you’re getting enough sleep for your age, as this can have a big impact on your bodies need for rest and recovery, which is essential in maintaining a fit and healthy lifestyle, as well as looking out for your mental well being.
Sticking to a routine of falling asleep and waking up at the same time everyday is key for your body's internal clock, otherwise known as your Circadian rhythm.
Getting into good sleep habits is very important, so you don’t feel groggy throughout the day or get the urge for long daily naps, which will ultimately affect your sleep quality further.
Napping for a very short time of 10-20 minutes in the early afternoon has shown good effects to re-energising your body to increase performance and productivity levels.
Anything longer than 20 minutes can negatively impact your sleep quality - so be sure to set an alarm (and don't hit that snooze button!).
Get the environment right
Your lifestyle and daily routine can also have an affect on your chances of getting a good night's sleep.
For example, those who work night shifts will have a less traditional sleep schedule, meaning sleeping in the brighter daytime hours will mean a dark and relaxing environment is even more important.
If bright lights are causing you trouble sleeping, it may be worth considering a black out blind to darken your bedroom.
Late summer evenings can also prevent your internal clock from shutting off at night.
This means that a new blind may be an easy fix, to darken your bedroom at night or similarly, to prevent your body waking up at the crack of dawn as the bright sunlight from an early sunrise leaks through your curtains early in the morning.
Filling your room with calming colours and soft-on-the-skin textures is certain to provide a restful environment, helping you to have a better sleep.
Perhaps a new, luxury blanket may be the perfect addition to your room, adding a touch of warmth that is sure to further improve your sleep.
Candles also make a particularly good sleep aid, adding a tranquil atmosphere into your bedroom, promoting relaxation with the subtle warm glow.
Be sure to look for scents that are known to help your body to unwind and feel tired, so that you fall asleep faster.
Candles made with natural fragrances such as lavender, will fill your room with a soothing scent and relax your body.
Exercise vs recovery
Research has clearly shown that the human body will fall naturally into a deep sleep after a warm bath.
This is due to the body experiencing a change in its core temperature, so that you can then jump into bed with a lower temperature, which signals the body to know it’s time to get to sleep.
Whilst a hot bath helps improve sleep, studies have also recognised many other health benefits, one being that having a hot bath or shower a couple of hours before bed has lowered blood pressure in older adults, whilst they sleep.
As well as this, taking part in regular exercise has been shown to help people fall asleep faster.
Depending on the time you exercise, this can begin to reset a poor body clock, helping you to fall asleep a little earlier each night.
It has also been proven that exercise can help positively impact your mental health, therefore helping the mind to relax and prevent any stress that may be keeping you up at night.
On other hand, if you are someone who enjoys an extremely active lifestyle, this can lead to trouble with achy muscles, which can keep you tossing and turning, causing disruption to your much-needed sleep.
If this sounds familiar, soaking off in a hot bath will be perfect for you, so that you are able to relax your sore, tight muscles and loosen up.
Also consider adding scented bath salts or some soothing music, just add that extra touch to aid your relaxation.
To be sure that you are wrapping yourself up warm in a luxuriously soft towel as you step out of your hot bath, why not consider a Bamboo Bath Towel, which will be super kind and delicate on the skin due to their beneficial hypo-allergenic properties
This is all thanks to the 100% natural fibres used to make craft these towels, with only finest materials to ensure utmost pleasure with every single use.
Invest in a sleep aid
A Weighted Blanket is a great investment which provides many health benefits, including help you to get the perfect night's sleep.
It is essentially a heavy blanket that acts in much the same way as a tight hug, helping the body to feel comforted.
Serotonin and endorphins are chemicals which are naturally produced by our body, to help us feel calm and relaxed.
The delicate yet firm pressure that a weighted blanket provides is able to reach our deep seated receptors to then aid these chemicals to release. This helps the body to fall into a deep sleep.
For people who suffer with insomnia or have psychomotor disorders such as autism and ADHD, this blanket is the ideal addition to your bed, as it will help ease away stress and anxiety as it firmly wraps around your body, putting your body into a peaceful state of relaxation.
But how heavy should a weighted blanket be? We recommend your Weighted Blanket be 10% of your body weight for it to work most efficiently, so you're able to fall asleep easier and wake up in the morning feeling more refreshed.
What not to do
I’m sure many of us are guilty of watching our favourite television shows as we lie in bed, or indeed having our phones by our bedside table.
These, and many other devices, will cause you a distraction and are likely to stop you from sleeping and keep you feeling wide awake.
The reason for this is that the screens in these electronic devices have backlit, blue light displays.
This harsh light prevents melatonin production - which is the hormone that helps you to relax and sleep at night.
It is also important to avoid alcohol before you want to sleep.
Despite it giving effects which can make you feel sleepy, it is in fact a stimulant which will unfortunately disrupt sleep and eliminate your chances of a good night's rest.
It is however suggested to drink a small glass of water before you go to sleep, so you don’t get woken up feeling thirsty and dehydrated due to your throat and nasal passages getting too dry.
Although, be mindful of how much you drink, as too many liquids can create the uncomfortable urge to use the bathroom during the night, which can leave you restless and struggling to fall asleep once you get back in bed.
Many health news outlets also advise to not eat a big meal immediately before you are hoping to get to sleep, as it can shift the circadian rhythm, (the sleep/wake cycle).
Furthermore, increased insulin and energy levels after eating will mean that you stay awake for longer.
Start sleeping better
Sleep is so often overlooked due to busy schedules, but it is incredibly vital for your body's needs and performance to get a good night's sleep - so you're able to function the best you can.
Following just a few of these simple tips should help you to fall asleep, stay asleep, and feel more rejuvenated the following day.