Make yourself comfortable
Create a sleeping environment in which you feel completely comfortable: a comfortable bed, a good mattress, a comfortable lying position and the right sleeping temperature – not too warm and not too cold.
A good guideline is a temperature of around 18 degrees in the bedroom.
Anyone who feels unwell, freezes, gets cold feet or sweats should adjust their sleepwear, blankets or the room temperature, says healthpally senior sleep consultant.
Likewise, tight sleeping clothes can hinder sleep and cause sleepless nights.
Discover the dark side of the night
Bright light with an intensity of 5,000 to 10,000 lux is definitely good for the body.
We release serotonin, which has an activating and antidepressant function.
The downside: Bright light shortens sleep duration because serotonin suppresses melatonin.
When the sun comes out early in the morning, a dark curtain or eye mask could prolong sleep.
Put your smartphone in night mode
Just before going to sleep to check e-mails and the latest news? Better not: The light from smartphones and tablets is just as obstructive as daylight.
The reason is the high proportion of blue light in the displays, which inhibits the production of melatonin in the brain. That’s why it’s better to switch off cell phones in the evening.
This reduces the activating, short-wave blue light between 450 and 480 nanometers, so melatonin production is less inhibited.
Take it easy
We need rest to sleep. And this is disturbed by noise, for example, if the bedroom is on a busy street. Then it’s time to close the window or use earplugs to reduce the noise level.
Exciting activities before going to bed can also be counterproductive, Healthpally boss hinted.
These include sporting activities, thrilling computer games or exciting films.
These increase your heart rate, blood pressure and breathing rate – and prevent you from resting.
It can even cause stress and your thoughts may be circling around the PC game for quite a while while you are already lying in bed and should be sleeping.
It is essential to avoid this. Rather rely on autogenic training or read a book.
Create a bedtime ritual
If you have trouble falling asleep in the evening, you can put your body into sleep mode with a regular bedtime ritual.
These can be regular bedtimes, relaxation exercises or a cup of soothing hot tea.
You should stay away from sleeping pills as much as possible.
Sudden discontinuation of sleeping pills is difficult in the case of addiction because withdrawal symptoms appear immediately.
In addition, sleeping pills also suppress the important REM sleep phase. It is better to talk to your family doctor, which can help you.
Avoid alcohol, caffeine and heavy food
Too much alcohol prevents you from sleeping through the night, because sweat production, alcohol-related dehydration (exsiccosis) and consequently thirst are stimulated – and last but not least, increased use of the toilet.
Caffeine is the antagonist of the sleep-inducing adenosine and, because caffeine occupies the same receptors as adenosine, it also inhibits fatigue.
Skip the afternoon nap
Last but not least: If you can’t sleep, you may have just slept enough, for example during the day.
If you take a nap regularly but often sleep badly at night, it is better to skip the nap.
In addition, a nap in the afternoon is not the same as a nap in the afternoon. A small power nap of ten minutes will also do.
Exercise in the fresh air
Sleep problems can also arise if the adenosine release is not stimulated enough during the day.
Movement creates adenosine. A walk in the fresh air is enough to help you get tired in the evening.
Sport or a lot of exercises later in the day is – as already mentioned – not advisable.
A short walk is also easier to incorporate into everyday work, for example during the lunch break.