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I don’t think as parents you can ever catch up on the countless hours
Having trouble sleeping?
What helps sleep?
The following will help you fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and be more comfortable while you rest and will help your body recover in preperation for the busy day ahead.
The goal here isn’t to wear yourself out, but it’s said that exercise in the afternoon can improve sleep in the evening.
Morning or afternoon exercise helps you fall asleep faster with less trouble but be sure not to exercise right before bed, as that had the opposite effect.
Set a gentle alarm
There are tons of different sounds on your mobile these days that will wake you to music or soothing sounds. You could even try wake-up light that slowly raises the light level in the room (yes the one your child probably has!) as you approach your wake-up time.
Ditch the alcohol
It’s said that alcohol can be relaxing and help you get to sleep, but it’s damaging to the sleep cycle once you’re out. The end result is a restless night where you wake more frequently than you would.
Cut out the caffeine
Caffeine has a different effect. It lengthens the 2nd phase of your sleep cycle. The second phase is where your brain starts reorganising itself and preparing for the day ahead – which is great for naps, but not for a night of deep sleep. Caffeine shortens phases three and four, where REM sleep and dreaming occur.
Watch the cigarettes
Nicotine, can be relaxing in small doses, but too much keeps you awake and prevents the onset of sleep entirely.
Cut back on screen time
I am totally guilty of not putting my phone down until seconds before my head hits the pillow but study after study all point to the notion that electronic devices harm our sleep cycles. The screens are so bright that they confuse the brain and in effect wake it up. Many phones now have the option to darken the screen so if you do need to be on it then make sure you alter the brightness.
Ideally, we should turn off our gadgets at least 1-2 hours before bedtime. Longer is best, but admittedly it’s hard!
You may not struggle to get to sleep, particuarley if you are exhausted, but it will not be as deep, and therefore less restorative.”
Meditate before bed
I’ve listened to relaxing podcasts in the past and more recently specifically a
Improve your evening routine
Your evening routine is important, and if you’re not working in everything from a snack (you don’t want to go to bed hungry, you’ll wake up or be restless through the night) to going to the bathroom (waking frequently to go to the bathroom can lead to shallow sleep all night and throw off your sleep cycle), you may suffer for it.
Start a healthy “bed routine” of winding down that starts long before your head hits the pillow.
I hope that helps and gives you a few ideas to improve your sleeping patterns and allows you to get better sleep.
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