Since you were a child, you most likely heard that you need to have a bedtime routine, chances are, you actually had one but never noticed it. There are many different reasons why a bedtime routine is important, but the main reason is that it helps you to fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer. It also helps you to wake up feeling refreshed and energized in the morning. A good sleep routine can help your mental health, your physical health, and even your weight!
But how exactly does a routine help that? It’s very obvious that sleep is good for you. But why is a routine so vital? How does this help adults and children sleep well at night? It’s all about getting your brain mentally prepared for slumber. It’s important to just let your mind and body just relax so they can refresh for the next day. So, how can you do all of this? How can you have a successful bedtime routine so you can take on the next day? Here’s everything that you need to know!
Prepare Your Environment for Sleep
The environment you sleep in has a big impact on the quality of your sleep. Some of the key factors that affect your sleep are:
- Noise: The amount and type of noise you hear while sleeping can have a big impact on your sleep quality.
- Temperature: Sleep experts recommend keeping your bedroom cool, with temperatures ranging from 60 to 68 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Lighting: Experts recommend keeping your room dark at night, with no light coming in from outside or inside the room. So look into some good blackout curtains.
You should also keep in mind that it’s about the physical comfort levels of the bed too. Everyone has their own preferences for mattresses, pillows, and even the quality of the material for sheets themselves. So, what exactly makes you comfortable? You just can’t toss and turn until you fall asleep, you’re going to need to be comfortable in order to slip off into dreamland.
Having a bedtime routine is a great way to make sure that you are getting enough sleep and to help your body and mind wind down before bed. Having these little rituals that keep everything in the same order not only allows you to keep on top of things, but it’s going to help your evenings too. It helps you to complete tasks and provides a sense of order in your life. Creating rituals can help you to have better sleep quality and make your sleep more efficient.
Routines are also important because they provide a sense of security and predictability in life. This can include switching to pajamas, taking off your Audemars Piguet watch and properly storing it somewhere until the next day, brushing your teeth, reading a bedtime story to your child, or anything else to help slow down the mind.
Set a Regular Time - Wake Up and Go to Sleep at the Same Time Everyday
The body's natural circadian rhythm is regulated by a biological clock. This biological clock is sensitive to light and dark cycles and responds to the day-night cycle. Staying up late, or sleeping in will disrupt your sleep patterns as well as your circadian rhythm. This can cause you to feel groggy, have trouble concentrating, and be more irritable.
It is important to set a regular time for waking up and going to sleep. This will help you get into a healthy sleep-wake cycle that will be beneficial for your body and mind. Waking up at the same time every day can also help you maintain a consistent mood throughout the day. And it can also help reduce stress, increase your productivity, improve your mood, and lower your risk of depression.
Consider Investing in a Light Alarm Clock
When it comes to creating a solid nightly routine before bedtime, you’re also going to need to think about the mornings too. More specifically, how you’re waking up, Alarms are usually jump scares, that just jolt you awake. It’s certainly not the best way to wake up. Instead, why not consider a light alarm clock. They slowly begin to emit more and more light, and can even make bird chirping sounds. You’re getting to wake up slower, more natural, and usually, it helps with feeling refreshed. So, if you’re wanting to have a good nightly routine, start by looking at the way you’re waking up each day.
Consider a Sleep Aid
While sleeping aids such as melatonin or sleeping pills aren’t always recommended, sometimes they can be necessary when trying to set up a steady bedtime routine. But you’re still better off going the all-natural route. So, why not consider drinking some warm milk or tea that’s meant to relax you before bed? This could be an option to help you feel more relaxed. Another tip could include taking a hot shower before bedtime as well. This is a great way to really let your muscle get relaxed, and it can help the brain too.
Avoid Looking at Screens Before Bed
Almost everyone spends a lot of their time in front of a screen. Whether it's on the TV, computer, or phone, screens are everywhere. The problem is that looking at screens before bed can have negative effects on your sleep. The blue light from the screen can suppress melatonin production and make it hard for you to fall asleep. If you're having trouble sleeping, try turning off all screens at least one hour before bedtime.
You should also avoid using your phone in bed because it will make it even harder to fall asleep and stay asleep. It may feel a tad hard to do, but try your best to drop the habit of constantly having your eyes glued to a phone. Instead, one hour before bed, consider reading a book or magazine.
Select the Timing of Your Meals and Snacks Wisely
There are a few things that we can do to help our children establish good sleeping habits and routines around meals. You’re going to want around a three to four-hour gap between dinner time and bedtime. Your food digest better when you’re awake, you’re less likely to feel sick, plus, eating before bed can make you wake up tired. You should also avoid caffeine after 3 pm, and try to limit your intake of junk food. This can include salty foods and sugary foods too. Junk food is already bad for the body, but it can affect your sleep too.
Start Exercising During the Day so You Have Less Energy at Night
This is not a new concept. For years, people have been going to the gym or working out during the day so they can sleep better at night. Everyone is aware of how important it is to get a good night’s sleep. The problem with this strategy is that it can be hard to find time for exercise in your busy schedule. The key here is to make exercise part of your daily routine. If you start exercising in the morning and then again later in the day, you will find that it doesn't take up as much time as you think.
You might even find that you enjoy the extra activity and have more energy throughout the day because of it! Regular physical activity is good for the body and mind. Regular physical activity also helps you sleep better in the evening. Having an outlet for releasing your energy is going to make it so much easier to sleep in the evenings.
If you live in Alaska and you would like to speak to a sleep specialist about improving your bedtime routine, please click the link below.