It's hard to wake up when you haven't slept well and the day tends to drag on when you're tired. You may drink too much coffee, overstimulate your adrenals, and then the vicious cycle of poor sleep starts all over again.
There are some basics you can do to ensure better sleep quality, including not drinking caffeine past 12, which I didn't list here. These simple rules will help you to achieve a blissful night of sleep!
- Lower the temperature-- The National Sleep Foundation recommends keeping your bedroom between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit for an optimal night’s sleep. Researchers believe this range enables energy that would be used for maintaining body temperature into other repair and rejuvenation.
- Turn off electronics at least 1 hour before going to bed--Electronics such as tablets, laptops, smartphones, TV, and LED light bulbs emit blue light, which delays the release of melatonin, can keep you awake long into the night, and can effect sleep quality.
- Take steps to make sure that your room is dark-- Studies show excess light in the bedroom can affect sleep quality. Artificial light cues the brain to wake up, and interferes with the production of melatonin. The more light you can remove from your space, the better the quality of your sleep. So, blinds that block light, turning off all lights, and removing electronics that may emit light are all steps that can help promote better sleep.
- Try a weighted blanket—although there are not yet a lot of studies to support it, there is anecdotal evidence that sleeping with a weighted blanket that is 10% of your body weight promotes deeper, more restful sleep. In the studies that have been conducted, people found that when they used weighted blankets, they settled down more quickly, slept longer and spent less time awake during the night.
- Plant-based, natural supplements—there are supplements like L-tryptophan and 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP), and traditional herbal supplements like Chamomile that are known to positively effect sleep. However, instead of using a single-ingredient supplement, I recommend to my patients that they use a supplement with multiple herbs. I have created IN:DREAM, a highly effective, proprietary blend of 10 herbs in a delicious drink mix. Each of the individual ingredients that I have included help with sleep in and of themselves, and together, they make the perfect tonic to address underlying issues that get in the way of deep, restful sleep. IN:DREAM includes herbs like Polygala Radix to help you fall asleep gently, and Ophiopogonis Root, which is used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat irritability and restlessness. IN:DREAM is a non-addictive, great-tasting, natural way to promote the kind of sleep that we all dream about and that we need to have a healthy, happier life!
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