Sleeping is an essential function of the human body, whereby it recharges and rejuvenates itself to perform at maximum efficiency during the following day. A good night’s rest can improve cognitive functions, strengthen the immune system and facilitate great mental health, just to name a few benefits.
Research shows that the average human body requires seven to nine hours of blissful sleep. However, more than one-third of adults in the US report getting less than the minimum amount of sleep each night. Among the many drawbacks that this has, poor sleep leads to unplanned absences from work, an act that eventually costs the US economy nearly $45 billion each year.
While many people may not know this, the quality of sleep you get has a great role in how well the body can function during the day. Sleeping as a function is divided into REM and non-REM sleep. In healthy adults, REM or rapid eye movement sleep is the stage where the person dreams and it makes up about 20% to 25% of each cycle. This part of your sleep is critical in memory building, healthy brain development, and emotional processing.
As for non-REM sleep, it is the restful or quiet stage where you drift between deep and light sleep. This makes up the rest of each sleep cycle. Both types of sleep are important in facilitating your body in various ways.
With all this in mind, here are some tips to help you get a good night’s rest:
1. Start by finding the best, most comfortable mattress for yourself
Each person and their preferences regarding mattresses can differ. In the US, SleePare is a place that offers you a one-window solution to the best mattress choices available, as you can compare and shop for various types of mattresses to find the one that works best for you.
Having a comfortable mattress is the first step toward allowing your body to get the sleep it deserves. There is a high probability that the reason you are not getting a good night’s rest is because something doesn’t feel right with your mattress. Once you are able to find the bed that offers the greatest comfort, you can start to notice considerable differences in how well you sleep at night.
2. Build a healthy and consistent sleeping habit
The human body is wired to follow certain clocks. For instance, the time at which you take your meals is something that the brain can memorize, and you start feeling hungry at the same time every day. The same is true for sleep as well. The time at which you generally fall asleep is when the brain will program, meaning you may have trouble sleeping before that time.
It is, therefore, important to be consistent with the time you go to bed. The healthiest people are the ones that schedule their bodies to wake up between 04:00 and 05:00 AM, and considering the seven to nine-hour sleep cycle, this means going to bed between 07:00 to 10:00 PM. It is as the old saying goes, early to bed, early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise!
It doesn’t matter when you go to bed as long as you are consistent with time every day. Ensure this routine is not disturbed even on the weekends because once the brain registers a change in sleep times, the old cycle can be impacted almost immediately.
3. Make your bedroom the most comfortable piece of heaven on Earth
Besides the mattress, other factors inside your bedroom play a role in influencing sleep patterns. From mood lighting to the perfect temperature, from varying levels of darkness to certain sound-proofing elements, these elements, once again, can vary from person to person. Your definition of the most relaxing environment in the room can differ from any other person.
No matter what it is, ensure you have a bedroom that fits your specifications for relaxing and sleeping well. Make it as dark, soothing, quiet, and comfortably temperature adjusted as possible. If a certain mood lighting or ambient hues make you feel better, go for it, but make sure they are not too bright to hinder your sleep.
At the same time, invest in simple gadgets like air purifiers and insect repellants if necessary. Certain allergens are always suspended in the air inside the home and may not be visible to the naked eye, but they can disturb your normal sleep cycle. Air purifiers take these particles out of the way to pave the way for the blissful sleep you deserve.
4. Get rid of all electronic devices before going to bed
The blue light that most gadgets emit is harmful to the eyes, especially when the rest of the room is dark. This is why experts recommend getting rid of all electronic devices at least an hour before going to bed. Spend your time reading a book, meditating, or indulging in any other healthy activity; this reduces the stress on your mind, allowing it to rest better.
5. Avoid large meals right before bed
It takes the human body an average of 3-hours to completely digest a meal. Since sleeping is the resting phase for the body, consuming a large meal, including alcohol or caffeine, defeats the purpose. After eating, your digestive system begins doing its job, which means it is not ready to shut down in the middle of the process.
What you are doing when you try to sleep right after a huge meal is that you are not allowing the body to rest as it should, that is, after completing all the day’s work. Common results of this include bloating, excessive weight gain, and a general feeling of uneasiness that persists almost all night. As a result, you are not able to get the quality of sleep you need.
Sleeping well is a result of various factors, including consistency, building a soothing environment, and taking certain precautions like staying away from electronic devices and large meals before bed. Given the benefits of a good night’s rest, you need to get your routine in order so that your mental and physical health can remain protected for longer periods.