How to get a better nights sleep
Trouble sleeping? Follow this sleep routine religiously for one month!
FOOD AND DRINK
Ensure no caffeinated drinks, chocolate or sweet food such as cakes, biscuits or alcohol are consumed after 4 pm in the evening. Drink chamomile or Relaxation or Sleep teas instead (Pukka and Clipper are good brands).
Eat a light meal as early as possible, so your body is not trying to work at digestion late in the evening.
MAKE YOUR ROOM SLEEP FRIENDLY
Check that there are no electrical devices near your bed or on the other side of the wall. Electromagnetic frequencies emitted by mobile phones, fridges etc can affect sleep patterns
Use ear plugs if noise is an issue. In hot weather, use a cotton sheet/light blanket instead of a duvet. Make sure your bed is comfortable.
Use black out curtains if light is a problem.
Avoid watching TV very late or using digital devices in the bedroom. The screen tricks the brain into thinking it is daytime, so it doesn’t need to release melatonin for sleep.
Avoid all phone calls, texting , computer use and digital devices after 9 pm. These can be over stimulating and wake you up.
IN THE EVENING
Use relaxation techniques. Try Yoga Nidra, this is a guided relaxing meditation. There are many Yoga Nidra YouTube videos and Apps you can use.
Try meditation – There are many CDs available for purchase online or at Holland and Barrett. There are also YouTube videos and Apps you can use for guided meditations. Keep trying until you find one that works for you!
Use breathing techniques, such as pranayama used in yoga to relax. Search YouTube to find a technique that suits you. Deep breathing is very powerful for relaxation and can activate our parasympathetic nervous system which enables us to relax. Try counting
to 4 on the in breath and 8 on the outbreath. Repeat for several minutes. Breathe through the nose, deep into the belly.
Take a bath using relaxing essential oils such as lavender, chamomile, ylang ylang. Put 5 -10 drops in your bath and light a few candles, and play relaxing music if you enjoy it. A recent study shows music playing at 60 bpm or less is good for relaxation and sleep.
GOING TO BED
Take any herbal supplements an hour before retiring.
Use essential oils e.g lavender or the Tisserand Sweet Dreams Roller Ball (available from Boots, Holland and Barrett) and apply in bed to wrists, temples and feet while in bed.
Go to bed 10.00 -10.30pm at the latest! In Chinese Medicine, they say we need to be asleep before 11pm so our shen, can be fully replenished in our gallbladder (gallbladder time is 11pm-1am) and this will enable us to feel vital! Remember also the old wives tale, of an hour before midnight is worth 2 after.
Read when you get into bed. Find a good book to read, preferably in hard copy as kindles etc can stimulate the pineal gland. If you use an electronic device, dim the light. Books are cheap and easy to find in charity shops.
If your mind is going round and round use Bach Flower Remedies Sleep Formula available chemists and Holland & Barrett