It is a miserable feeling to be exhausted, in bed, and unable to sleep. These seven steps can get you off to a good start for a peaceful night of rest. You may not to do every step, but do give the ones a try that you think will help!
1. Avoid Caffeine Later in the Day
Everyone is different. Some people cannot drink caffeine at all without it affecting their sleep. Others find that they can drink coffee or tea until afternoon without harming their sleep. Figure out if caffeine consumption is affecting your sleep.
2. Shut Down the Screens
Put your computers, phones and devices to sleep an hour before you plan to go to bed. Using a computer right before bed can leave your brain too stimulated to be able to fall asleep.
3. Sleep in the Dark
Your body was meant to sleep in the dark. Turn off lights, including night lights. Use shades to cover your windows if you have street lights outside. If you work during the night and sleep during the day, wear a mask over your eyes to mimic night.
4. Have Some Herbal Tea
There are many relaxing herbs, like chamomile. Try a cup of warm chamomile tea or a “sleep bend” during the last waking hour of your day. Clove tea is another tea that promotes deep sleep.
5. Take a Sleep Inducing Bath
Instead of a shower before bed, try an Epsom salt bath. The magnesium in the Epsom salt will absorb into your body while you soak helping you to unwind and relax. Add 1 - 2 cups of Epsom salt to your warm bath water. 1-2 drops of lavender essential oil can promote relaxation as well.
6. Use Ear Plugs
Noise reducing ear plugs will keep those distressing noises that can keep you from falling asleep, be it a snoring housemate, tinnitus, barking dogs or traffic. Do not get ear plugs that are a dollar a dozen, literally. You get what you pay for with ear plugs, even if they appear to be the same thing.
Do not concentrate on falling asleep. Concentrate on something else. Thinking about how many minutes you have been in bed will not help. Thinking about your "to do" list will also be stressful. But thinking about happy or neutral things can distract you from your stress over not sleeping. There is a reason that people talk about counting sheep to help you sleep. Try to remember the birth date of your friends. Make a mental list of all of the places you have lived. Mentally list the ingredients in your favorite recipe. etc...
Avoid over the counter and prescription medications to help you sleep. Medications can be addictive and have serious side effects.
If these simple tips do not help you with your sleep problems, please see our information about insomnia. You will find pages of reader experiences with different home remedies to help you sleep.
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