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Saturday, June 6, 2020

Not Getting Enough Sleep? What's The Culprit

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Sleep is one of the most important elements of well balanced physical and mental health. When we don’t sleep well, our mental state suffers - we’re less able to focus and be empathetic, we may forget things easily or be very irritable. Our physical health also suffers - we can gain weight as we’re less likely to exercise and more likely to reach for sugary foods for an energy boost. So making sure we have a proper span of eight hours each night is important to keep us looking and feeling good. And yet there is an epidemic of sleeplessness going on at the moment, so many of us don’t get the rest that our bodies and minds so badly need. So if you aren’t getting good quality rest - what is the culprit?

Check For Sleep Disorders
There are a lot of undiagnosed sleep disorders out there that can stop us getting our required amount of beauty sleep. So if you’re constantly tired but you have no idea why, it could be worth ruling out things like sleep apnea. Signs can be falling asleep quickly but never feeling refreshed when you wake, or even feeling hyperactive during the day.  If you can’t fall asleep at all, make sure you don’t suffer from insomnia or anxiety that is preventing you sleeping - all these conditions should be treated by a doctor.

Keep It Cool And Dark
Many of us have sleeping environments that just aren’t conducive to the kind of deep, restorative rest that we need to function well. Firstly, make sure that the room you sleep in has a consistent temperature (slightly cool is better). Ensure you have the right tog rated bedding for the season, so that you aren’t getting too hot or too cold during the night, which can disturb your rest. And keep it dark - heavy lined curtains or blackout blinds are another essential. You may also want to ban electronic devices from your bedroom, as they emit blue light, which disturb’s the body’s natural production of the sleep hormone melatonin.

Create A Wind Down Routine
If switching off in the evenings is a problem, then try putting in place a wind-down routine to help you relax towards a good night’s sleep. Use a social media blocker to turn off your social networks and hour or two before you want to go to sleep. Then try things such as a mindfulness podcast, an at-home gentle yoga routine, following a skincare routine or a deep relaxing bath to soothe your body. Some people find that chamomile tea is useful, while others prefer a warm, milky drink. If you have a lot on your mind, you can try using a gratitude journal to reframe your thoughts more positively. Or perhaps you can use aromatherapy to help you drift off  - a lavender pillow spray, or a diffuser scenting the room can help you to calm your mind and prepare better for sleep. Try a few things until you can create a routine that works for you, and then stick to it consistently.
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