One of the first things I recommend to people struggling to have a good night’s sleep, or even falling asleep at that, is to keep their phones outside of their bedroom. No, keeping it on silent by your pillow is not the same! Even having your phone close to you can keep you mind stimulated through the power of suggestion! “I wonder if I got any likes on the photo I posted earlier… did so and so text me back yet?… I should reach out to Susan, I totally forgot about our coffee date last week and I feel terrible now!”So even having your phone on silent or vibrate does not mean it’s not going to disturb you! Not only that but recent studies are showing that staring at the blue light coming from your screen can negatively affect your health in many ways! All the more reason to keep the phone in the kitchen so that it doesn’t tempt you when you are trying to fall asleep!
“Out of sight, out of mind” as they say.
Secondly, I suggest to dim the lights and avoid looking at your phone, the TV, or any other bright devices about an hour before you plan to head to bed! This prepares your mind and body for sleep. Try to get in a routine of doing this at around the same time every evening and eventually your body will start to expect it and sleep will come much faster once you head to bed!
Another suggestion is to try taking a vitamin D supplement. Recent studies are linking low levels of vitamin D to poor quality of sleep! So if you live in a cooler climate and spend more time indoors than you do outdoors you might want to look into a supplement with at least 1000ius of vitamin D3 to take daily!
Other things that have been linked to a better night’s sleep are daily exercise (even just going for a walk if cardio isn’t your thing), eating a higher protein and lower sugar snack with slow digesting carbohydrates before bed (often eating something high in sugar before bed can keep you awake as the body may produce a large insulin surge to combat this and could cause you to get low blood sugar which will usually causes you to feel restless and uncomfortable as your body will crave more sugar to
stabilize it’s levels!) Lastly, having a sense of purpose believe it or not has been recently linked to a better night’s sleep as well!
If you have tried all of the above and are still struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, don’t hesitate to go to your family physician for help! Sleep is one of those things that is so important for our well being that sometimes we may have to resort to medication for a while to assist us in fulfilling a good night’s sleep so we can perform better during the day! Your doctor may also test you for other health conditions that could be affecting your sleep such as sleep-apnoea so it doesn’t hurt to mention it to your doctor just in case!