How to get a good night's sleep?

Updated on 18 August 2022

After an entire night of unprecedented tossing and turning, you will possibly wake up feeling sleepy, and extraordinarily grumpy. Weary mornings followed by restless nights can initially seem like a temporary glitch in the sleep schedule but might become more frequent as we get older and our sleep patterns change. It is quite common to experience trouble sleeping from time to time. However, if it persists day after day, it becomes your worst nightmare. Besides making us tired and temperamental, lack of sleep can have severe effects on our health, thereby increasing our propensity for obesity, heart disease and Type II diabetes.

Often people turn to sleep medications when they have trouble falling asleep, in order to slip into a peaceful slumber. However, what's important to note here is the fact that these drugs are temporary and may have severe side effects including appetite changes, dizziness, drowsiness, abdominal discomfort, dry mouth, headaches and strange dreams.

Tips to Have A Good Night's Sleep

Having said that, we understand that in certain cases resorting to sleeping aids becomes your only option. But before you start on any form of sleep medication, you may want to try these simple tips for a better night's sleep,

  • Exercise

Exercising boosts the effect of natural sleep hormones such as melatonin. Exercising regularly or even taking a brisk walk doesn’t just help you trim down, but will also tire you and keep you up less often at night. A morning workout could be ideal considering the fact that exercising close to bedtime can be stimulating. The natural circadian rhythm is accelerated in your body when you expose yourself to bright daylight first thing in the morning.

  • Reserve bed for sleep only

It is essential to understand that the bed should not be used as an office space or for answering phone calls or other kinds of non-sleep activities. In fact, watching late-night TV in bed should be avoided as well. The bed needs to be a stimulus for sleeping, not wakefulness. So, make sure that the bed is reserved, to the maximum extent possible, for sleep only.

  • Keep it comfortable

Television isn't the only possible distraction in your bedroom. Ambience can affect your sleep quality too. Make sure your bedroom is as comfortable as possible. Ideally you want "a quiet, dark, cool and positive environment" says Dr.Carlson, "All of these things promote sleep onset."

  • Start a sleep ritual

As a child, when your mother read you a story and tucked you into bed every night, you would soon fall asleep. It became like a comforting ritual that lulled you to sleep. Even in adulthood, a set of bedtime routines can have a similar effect. These rituals signal the body and mind that it is soon going to be time to sleep. Unlike listening to a story, you can choose to drink a glass of warm milk or take a warm bath. This will help you get into a routine, while also maintaining a smooth sleep schedule.

  • De-stress

Whenever the bills start picking up and your to-do list seems like a mile long, remember that you have to keep your calm to work this through. Daytime worries also tend to surface at night. Stress is a stimulus that activates the fight-or-flight hormones, working against sleep. So, learning some form of relaxation responses such as yoga poses for a better night’s sleep, might just help you relax better and can also reduce daytime anxiety. To relax, try deep breathing exercises and simple forms of meditation. Remember to inhale, slowly and deeply, and then exhale.

Insomnia can be handled effectively by practising the above-mentioned tips. However, if it persists, it might be a good time to seek professional advice. The three most common sleep disruptors are an urge to move your legs, snoring and burning pain in your stomach. In case these are keeping you up at night or making you feel drowsy and bedraggled throughout the day, it is best that you see your doctor for an evaluation.

You may also seek help from our Sleep Specialists at CHL Hospitals, Indore for a detailed sleep-study check-up, advice and medication.






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