Getting sufficient sleep is often overlooked when it comes to our health. And that’s unfortunate. Tons of research have shown that we need at least 7 hours of sleep.
The physical benefits of sufficient sleep are many. For example, sleep will aid in the healing of our heart, blood vessels and immune system. In addition it will help you stay slim. Research have shown that you’ll eat more calories on days when you haven’t had sufficient sleep the night before.
But sadly insomnia is a widespread problem today. I know, I used to suffer a lot from it in the past. I still remember the days when I woke up brutally tired and sweaty, and had to get up for work. Not fun memories!
However when I began paying serious attention to my health, I also looked into various ways to get better sleep. I’ve tried many things but sadly most of them just didn’t work. But some of them have been real game changers and now I can easily sleep 7 or 8 hours every night.
So how to get better sleep? Let me explain what methods have helped me sleep better at night.
There are a few things that I do in preparation for bed time that’s helped me get better sleep. One rule is to not use any electronic devices 30 minutes before bedtime. These devices are kept out of the bedroom period. Instead I read a good book. Reading has the added benefit of putting me in a relaxed meditative state which makes it easier for me to fall asleep.
In addition I try to keep the bedroom very dark and free from outside noise. A few years ago I throw out my old drapes and put in new darker ones, which made a big difference. And fortunately my windows have multiple panes that keep the outside traffic noise to a minimum.
Finally I’ve tried to reduce my caffeine intake in the afternoons. I love coffee but I try to have my cups earlier in the day. Now I drink my last cup at lunch time and nothing else in the afternoon.
Several of my friends claims that listening to white noise at night improves their sleep. I was initially skeptical. However there does seem to be some scientific backing for this claim. Since white noise comes out evenly across all frequencies, it creates a masking effect from outside noise. This makes sense and it may be a solution if you have trouble sleeping due to outside noise. It’s worth trying!
So where can you find white noise? Today it’s relatively easy. The Internet video site Youtube has several videos with many hours of white noise. My friends prefer to use an application that they download and install on their smartphones. One such application is called White Noise Free and it’s available in your Android or iPhone application store.
Track your Sleep
Today there are ways to track our sleep patterns using advanced technology. For example I have a fitness wrist band from Q-Band. It’s a versatile product that can keep track of my heart rate, calories burnt and overall fitness progress. In addition it can be used to track my sleep with some pretty good details. I can get a report of my deep sleep, light sleep, REM and awake time. It’s a great product that I highly recommend.
If you want even more sleep data there’s another product called Beautyrest Sleeptracker Monitor. It comes with advanced sensors that are placed under your mattress so no need to wear anything on your body. It can monitor your heart rate and the quality of your sleep. And you get data about your light sleep, deep sleep and REM cycles. In addition you can see data about your body movements and interruptions.
Generally I’m not a fan of using supplements. However there are a few that have worked well for me such as Creatine and Whey Protein. In addition I have successfully used Melatonin to get better sleep. Melatonin exists naturally in our bodies and is produced when our brains thinks we are ready for sleep. You can buy it as prescription free pills in places such as the United States.
The effect on me is very noticeable and I’m able to fall asleep around 30 minutes after I take the pill. In addition, I have never noticed any side effects such as addictions after I have used it for longer periods of time. Furthermore, a higher dosage doesn’t give me better sleep. I use a very low dose of just 3 mg and that’s enough for me. And Melatonin is also great for jetlag so I always bring some with me when I travel.
I have used this brand of Melatonin for many years and highly recommend it!