Importance of Good Sleep
Sleeping well at night sets the tone for the next day. You feel well-rested and your brain functions at optimal capacity. Good sleep has an important role to play in our physical health. Those who sleep poorly have a hard time losing weight. While we sleep, our heart and blood vessels repair themselves. Those who sleep well, need to eat fewer calories. Sleep also affects glucose metabolism in the body.
Ill-effects of Disturbed Sleep
Those who don’t sleep well are more susceptible to stroke, heart disease, and diabetes. Apart from improving our moods and boosting our immune health, sleep improves productivity. Not just this, insufficient sleep is connected to increased risk of cancer. To reduce inflammation and related diseases because of that, a good amount of sleep is recommended.
But what if you could not sleep well the night before? Apart from feeling grouchy and restless, some people may even get acidity in the stomach. Read on to find out more about some bad night’s sleep dos and don’ts to get your sleep pattern back on track.
Dos After a Bad Night’s Sleep
- Get up at the same time as every day even if you have slept late. Do this for as many days as you have a bad night’s sleep. This keeps the body’s internal clock set to its routine and helps you slip back into your old routine much quicker.
- Spend some time in the sun if you are having a slew of bad nights of sleep. This helps set the body’s internal clock and helps combat sleeplessness and insomnia.
- Most of us cannot function without our regular cups of tea or coffee. So continue with your choice of beverage but ensure that you keep it to your regular doses and not overdo it.
- Keep your bedroom for relaxing activities only. This helps as the brain associates the bedroom with sleep and relaxation and one finds it easier to catch some shut-eye. Invest in dark curtains and prep up your room for maximum comfort and relaxation. Also, invest in good mattresses and pillow sets.
- Exercise regularly to keep your circadian rhythms on track. Ensure that you exercise during the earlier part of the day and not too close to bedtime.
- Most of us need about seven hours of sleep. Some people can do with less than this and some need more. Figure out how much does your body need and sleep according to your own body’s signals. Read more on how many hours should we sleep
- Practice deep breathing and meditation techniques. These help to relax the body and get it in the mood to shut down for the night. Some people also have an easy stretching routine that helps them wind down.
- Take short naps. An afternoon siesta must not stretch for more than 30 minutes. Research says that sleeping more than that leads to lethargy and grogginess.
- Keep all gadgets out of the bedroom. Science says that the light from the electronic gadgets keeps the brain in the alert mode. Go offline at least an hour before bedtime to help your mind disconnect from the world.
- Eat light meals at night. Having too much fat-heavy food close to bedtime might make you feel uncomfortable and cause acidity and thus, hamper your sleep patterns.
Don’ts After a Bad Night’s Sleep
- Stay away from the snooze button. Much as you would like to continue sleeping in, the extra five minutes of sleep will not give you any considerable rest or boost in energy. On the contrary, you are reducing your time needed for your morning preparations. So instead of feeling rested, you may end up feeling rushed and frazzled.
- That bed might look so tempting after a bad night of sleep that you may even call in sick at work and decide to sleep till noon. This skews the body’s internal clock and sets the foundations of another bad sleep night.
- Don’t have too much caffeine, especially close to bedtime. Having too many cups of coffee will make you irritable and might even give you a headache as the body is already tired and over stimulating it will tax its resources.
- Don’t take naps in late afternoon or evening. Even if you are feeling really sleepy, don’t be tempted to sleep earlier in the evening to catch up on your sleep to avoid waking up too early in the morning and thus derailing your sleep patterns. Sleep at the same time like every day.
- Avoid drinking large quantities of fluids. Keep your alcohol consumption low and don’t push your dinner to too late in the night.
- Don’t compete with your friends about who can stay awake the latest. Sleep is essential for staying alert and active. It helps us to retain information. Everyone has a personal body rhythm that dictates the amount of sleep they need to function efficiently. Getting less than the requisite amount of sleep will hamper your ability to live your life optimally.
- Avoid doing cardio workouts like jogging, dancing or aerobics in the later part of the day. These pump up the metabolism and improve the hormones that help to stay awake.
- Do not study in bed. Studying may cause you stress and if you like to lie about and study, your mind will associate bedroom to stress and cause you to have sleep problems.
- If you like to bathe before you hit the sack, don’t take a cold shower. Go for a warm, steamy bath so that it relaxes the blood vessels and helps you feel sleepy.
- Don’t go to bed with stress. Write down whatever is troubling you or talk to someone to help yourself wind down. Avoid engaging in any activity that riles you up. This could be having an argument with a family member, thinking about things that trouble you or something else.
Have a set sleep routine that helps you unwind at the end of the day. Invest in a good bedroom and avoid indulging in any stimulating activities there. Exercise regularly but only during the earlier part of the day. Remove stress from your life to catch up on some restful sleep.
Also read: What are The Side Effects of Less Sleep?