Worst Sleep Habits
Did you know that everything you do during the day impacts what happens to you at night when you sleep? It’s true-your entire daily routine from the things you eat and drink, the medications you take, as well as how your day is scheduled affects the quality of your sleep. If you’re having trouble sleeping, some of the things going on during your day or before bedtime may be contributing to rough nights. Below is a list of some of the worst sleep habits.
- Avoid alcohol before bed time.
A lot of people believe the myth that a little alcohol before bed is good for sleeping. Sure, it can make us drowsy which may make us fall asleep faster. However, once the body begins to metabolize the alcohol, there is a period of sleep arousal which definitely disturbs the quality of sleep.
- Avoid caffeine and nicotine.
Both of these items are stimulants that when consumed within three hours of bedtime can make it tricky to fall asleep or stay asleep. The sleep may be disrupted until these chemicals wear off or are processed by your body.
- Avoid the snooze button.
If you can, set your alarm and keep it away from your bed within ear shot. Overtime, we get used to the sound of our alarm clock and it may lose its effectiveness at waking us up. If your alarm clock is your phone, it may also lead to temptation to keep checking emails, texts, or social media too much before bed. When you keep your alarm far away from your bed, reduces the chances of hitting the snooze button repeatedly and will encourage you to get out of bed to turn it off.
- Avoid sleeping during odd hours.
As adults, we often encourage the children in our lives to have a regular and steady sleep schedule. Adults need the same regular sleep cycle that children do. Sleeping at different times each night makes it difficult for our body to regulate our circadian rhythm.
- Don’t take long naps.
While there may be some cultures around the world that promote the midday nap, studies show that overall it may diminish your ability to sleep at night. If you are experiencing excessive daytime sleepiness, it may be worth a conversation with your doctor to see if you are suffering from a sleep disorder.
- Don’t exercise right before bed.
Exercising is usually not a bad thing and in fact, it’s encouraged to get at least 30 minutes of exercise a day. When you exercise right before bed, your body will be all revved up. Exercise raises your body’s temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure. With all of these elements, it may make it difficult to wind down when your body is wound up.
- Don’t use your bedroom as a multipurpose room.
When your bedroom is filled with a variety of entertainment systems including televisions, video game systems, and other things, it will ensure a mountain of stimulation. The light from these devices engages your brain and encourages it to be active, even when you may be trying to sleep.
- Try not to sleep someplace too cool, too warm, or too loud.
Sleeping in any environment that causes too many of the senses to be stimulated can disrupt rest. When you’re too hot, your body sweats, which can make it uncomfortable to fall asleep. When you are too cold, your body may have difficulty keeping you warm. When it’s too loud around you your brain will be trying to listen to all of the sounds happening around you. Try to find the best sleep temperature for you. Keep your room calm and quiet to ensure the most peaceful rest.
- Avoid going to bed angry.
When you go to bed angry, it may encourage restlessness prior to falling asleep. Your mind may be overthinking everything. As often as possible, it is encouraged to go to bed in the best state of mind possible to ensure you don’t have troubling thoughts as you’re falling asleep.
Humans are creatures of habit- this rule of thumb applies to our sleep habits as well! When you consistently practice bad sleep habits, you are setting yourself up for a rough night. But, when these habits are put out of practice, they can be replaced them with the right habits to ensure that a good night’s sleep is always had.