Dr. Scott Sanderson
Sleep: we all need it, but rarely do we get enough of it. It is just as essential as a healthy diet and regular exercise. Research shows that getting enough sleep every night helps protect your physical and mental health as well as improve your quality of life.
Sleep can sometimes be disrupted with poor nightly patterns. If you find yourself tossing and turning, here are some ways to get a better night’s sleep:
- Bright light during the day: daytime bright lights help improve your sleep patterns by helping to reset your body clock.
- Reduce blue light at night: phones, tablets, and computers at night can mess with your body clock by delaying your brain’s melatonin release, which occurs when you are sleeping. When the sleeping processes are not aligned, this can cause issues. If you must use your phone at night, turn on the night mode that blocks out blue wavelengths emitted by the screen.
- Don’t consume caffeine late in the day: this may seem obvious, as caffeine found in coffee and tea and some energy drinks will keep you awake and prevent a comfortable sleep.
- Consistency: go to bed at a the same time and wake up at the same time every day if possible. Your body clock will reset itself to get used to the sleep schedule, so you will naturally feel ready to sleep and alert at the same times!
- Reduce naps and irregular sleep: napping during the day might be a good way to energise yourself, but too much of it can affect your sleep as you will no longer feel tired at night.
- Take a melatonin supplement: help your brain release release melatonin by supplementing it. It helps aid in your sleeping cycle and can even relieve jetlag and insomnia. It’s different from sleeping pills in that you will not feel dependent on them and do not carry the same serious side effects that sleeping pills do.