Sleep does your body good. It’s restorative and a necessary part of the recovery process. If you’re hitting it hard at the gym, you should be hitting the pillow harder than ever. If you’re not, it could be due to many things including diet, environment, and even the relationships you have.
Chronic sleep disorders are best addressed by a medical professional trained in diagnosing and treating them. Still, there are things you can do today to invite better slumber into your life. To understand your unique need for sleep, it’s important to know just how much is needed for you to thrive. Each person is different so everything mentioned in the next section is a generalization for you to base your own sleep schedule on.
How Much Sleep is Enough?
Everyone’s sleep needs vary. In fact, it’s hard to say exactly how much sleep you require without learning your age, lifestyle habits, sleep patterns, and diet. The average number of hours recommended by experts for adults age 26 to 64 is seven to nine hours. Adults over the age of 64 typically sleep between seven and eight hours.
Your sleep needs may change over time, too. If you become more active, you may need more rest. If you’re ill or injured, sleep helps your body recover faster. Getting extra rest when you’re stressed or working long hours or a strenuous job can benefit you by increasing mental clarity and giving you the energy to get through the day more effortlessly.
Ways to Improve the Quality of Your Sleep
There are many ways to improve the quality of your sleep. They range in complexity and cost. For example, the mattress that you currently own may be the culprit. Buying a new mattress and box springs can make a world of difference in helping you get to sleep and stay asleep. It’s one of the more expensive but most effective fixes available.
Other things you can do to sleep more soundly at night include:
- Banishing electronics from the bedroom. The blue light from devices such as smartphones, tablets, and alarm clocks disrupt sleep. Keep these items out of your bedroom for a much better night of slumber. If you cannot avoid having a phone in the room with you, put it on airplane mode until you wake up in the morning so that your sleep doesn’t get disrupted by alerts. You can access the mode in settings and turn it back on each day when you’re ready to receive calls and messages pertaining to emails and social media updates.
- Investing in blackout curtains. The heavy draperies prevent light from coming through windows during the night. Using them to create a completely dark atmosphere helps set the tone for rest and tells your brain it’s time to shut down because the day is almost over. You’ll find that these curtains are very effective and affordable. They come in a wide range of colors to match your bedroom’s décor, too.
- Using a sound machine to drown out unwanted noises. Outside noises can be very disruptive to sleep. Use a white noise machine to take care of the problem for you. You’ll be able to eliminate all the distractions you formerly had and rest blissfully. If you have no other choice but to use your phone, choose an app that contains a white noise generator or one that includes natural sounds such as rain for best results.
- Keeping the room a comfortable temperature. If you’re too hot or too cold, you’ll likely toss and turn. That’s why it’s important to make sure that the room that you sleep in feels good to you. You can adjust the temp even further with fans or blankets. The point is to feel fully relaxed so you’re no longer fighting the Sandman for some zzzs. If you find that the temperature is hotter or colder than you like, you can easily adjust it by turning the air conditioning or fan up or putting an electric blanket on the bed to help you get through the cold nights.
- Take a warm bath with Epsom salts. The Magnesium in the salts combined with the temperature of the water relieves aches and pains and allows you to relax more fully. When you’re ready for bed, you’re still experiencing a sense of peace which helps you fall asleep without any real issue. Some Epsom salts have essential oils in them that help with relaxation. Look for ones with Lavender or Eucalyptus because both are calming, familiar scents that work well in making you feel sleepy.
Each person is different so one or more of the aforementioned suggestions may help you fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. Some ideas may not work for you at all. No matter what the case may be, keep in mind that once you’ve found something that works for you, it’s important that you include it as part of your nightly routine. That way, the habit sticks and doesn’t become another failed attempt in getting rest.
Enjoy a Better Workout Due to Improved Sleep Conditions
Get a better night’s sleep immediately. It will help you recover from your daily fitness regimen. Now that you have some ideas of ways to slip into a restful slumber, you’ll be able to do so with greater ease. There will be less tossing and turning throughout the night. Instead, you’ll dream of all the things you’ll do at the gym the next day.
When you’re well-rested, you don’t make the kind of mistakes that hurt you. You’re not as susceptible to accident, injury, and illness. You’re better able to handle obstacles in your life because you’re able to think clearly and make the right decision for yourself. That means that you’re thriving in as many areas of your life as possible. Your workouts are stronger, your body healthier, and your relationships are more supportive because the care you put into getting a good night’s rest consistently